Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2020, $208,020)
The State Justice Statistics (SJS) Program is designed to maintain and enhance each state's capacity to address criminal justice issues through collection and analysis of data. The SJS Program provides support to each state to coordinate and conduct statistical activities within the state, conduct research to estimate impacts of legislative and policy changes, and serve as a liaison in assisting BJS to gather data from respondent agencies within their states.
The Wyoming Statistical Analysis Center (WYSAC) is located within the College of Arts and Science at the University of Wyoming. The WYSAC is requesting funds to support one core capacity project (Continue Evaluation of County Juvenile Diversion Programs) and one special emphasis project (CCH and Crime Victim Compensation Data Analysis).
For the core capacity project, the WYSAC will use SJS funds for a one-year project to build upon the work completed under the 2019 core capacity award. Specifically, the 2020 project will 1) expand the electronic juvenile justice data collection system to include additional juvenile justice variables, and 2) increase access to and use of this data. With SJS FY19 funds, the WYSAC developed a user-friendly sustainable electronic juvenile justice data collection system. In addition, the WYSAC created a detailed user manual to instruct users on how to enter data into the system and troubleshoot common problems. For the FY20 SJS project, the WYSAC will expand the data collection system not only to track juveniles participating in the 15 county diversion programs, but also to track all juveniles who are cited, referred, charged, and adjudicated or convicted of criminal offenses in any of Wyomings counties. The system will track justice-involved juveniles from their initial point of contact in the juvenile justice system (e.g., arrest, citation, summons) to their exit from the system. The expanded system will also capture dispositions in juvenile cases. The WYSAC will also continue to work with the Volunteers of America Northern Rockies (VOA) to recruit additional diversion programs by communicating the benefits of collecting juvenile justice data, the simplicity of using the electronic juvenile justice data collection system, and how the data can be used to improve programming and policies.
For the special emphasis project, the WYSAC will use SJS funds to continue to build access to state records and data. Under the SJS FY19 award, a data exchange with the Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) was established to allow the WYSAC on-demand access to the states CCH records and evaluated DCIs CCH and DVS crime victim compensation database. For SJS FY20, the WYSAC will build on the newly acquired capacity to link the states CCH with the crime victim compensation data collected by the Division of Victim Services (DVS) to estimate the number of individuals convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence (MCDV) who are not captured in the NICS Indices as disqualified from purchasing or possessing a firearm. The project will address the capacity-building needs of the WYSAC by evaluating the completeness of the states criminal history records and identifying strategies to attain complete NICS records. The WYSAC will select cases in the DVS data from 2015 to 2020 in which the offenders relationship to the victim is federally disqualifying as established by the Lautenberg Amendment. The WYSAC will compare these cases to Wyomings criminal history records to identify cases that 1) resulted in a misdemeanor conviction under federal, state, or tribal law; and 2) have an element of the use or attempted use of physical force or the threatened use of a deadly weapon. Finally, the WYSAC will compare these records to III records and the NICS Indices to determine whether either system documents these offenders as prohibited from receiving or possessing firearms.