Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2018, $435,965)
The goal of the National Criminal History Improvement Program (NCHIP) is to improve the Nation's safety and security by enhancing the quality, completeness, and accessibility of criminal history record information and by insuring the nationwide implementation of criminal justice and noncriminal justice background check systems. BJS provides direct financial and technical assistance to the states to improve criminal history and other related records and to build their infrastructure to connect to national record check systems both to supply information and to conduct the requisite checks.
Under the 2018 NCHIP priority area 1, for updating and automating case outcomes in state records and the FBIs Criminal History File, the Virginia State Police (VSP) will conduct four projects to contribute information to the NICS. Specifically, 1) enhance the misdemeanor crime of domestic violence (MCDV) information in Livescan identifiers; 2) build a system to contain all drug dispositions not supported by fingerprints; 3) upgrade the Central Criminal Records Exchange (CCRE) to include restoration of firearm rights; and 4) continued enhancements to the JAVA based Computerized Criminal History System (JCCH).
1) MCDV Enhancements: VSP will enhance the national criminal history record background check system by improving the quality of criminal history information available to NICS for firearm-related background screening purposes pertaining to MCDV. The project will expand the information obtained by Livescan bookings to include the additional element of victim-relationship in any assault-related offense identified by specific state statutes to easily identify MCDV. The software will be redesigned to make it mandatory that the victim-relationship is selected prior to submission to CCRE of the arrest. The CCH RAP sheet will be modified to receive the additional data element in the criminal history record accessible at the state and national level.
2) Add Records of Disqualification to NICS: VSP will build a system to contain all drug-related dispositions not supported by fingerprints, which will create a file for the 10,000 to 15,000 court dispositions received each year. The additional file will improve the availability of drug-related events to NICS, for sharing nationwide with all agencies that access the NICS Indices in firearms background checks, as well as for use by law enforcement officers and prosecutors. The file will be used in courts in fitness determinations concerning the issuance of concealed handgun permits.
3) Restoration of Rights to Possess a Firearm Indicator: VSP will modify the CCH RAP sheet to contain an additional data-field indicating the restoration of firearms rights, which will make the information readily available to law enforcement officers and criminal justice agency personnel. This upgrade to share additional and essential information will reduce the time devoted to appeal processes associated with denied firearms-purchase or permit applications by the FBI NICS and POCs.
4) JCCH Enhancements: VSP will continue to provide a business analyst (BA) responsible for the oversight, operations, and requirements of the replacement JCCH system. This function is critical to ensuring that arrest and disposition information is applied accurately to the criminal record and that data is accurately transmitted to NICS and other federal and law enforcement databases. Primary responsibilities of the BA include: collecting and drafting JCCH system requirements related to program gaps, deficiencies and enhancements; analyzing and documenting JCCH system defects; provide system requirements; and work with the courts to provide guidance on disposition reporting.