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New Crime-Predicting Technology Introduced In Utah

Unfortunately, the public’s interest in preventing crime sometimes steps upon this process of assuming innocence until guilt is proven. For example, new crime prediction technology recently introduced in Utah may unintentionally rob individuals of presumed innocence in the eyes of law enforcement.

The new technology is predictive rather than reactive. This means that it is designed to help law enforcement agencies prevent crime by targeting geographic areas believed to inspire criminal activity on any given occasion. If police are led to believe that crime will occur in a given area, officers may act aggressively and without presuming the innocence of those they encounter in targeted areas.

The public certainly has an interest in preventing crime. But law enforcement must take care to use predictive crime analysis in such a way that it does not act without a presumption of innocence on the part of those individuals living or traveling inside a targeted geography. Otherwise, practical protection from unreasonable search and seizure, etc. might become memories. Because once an area is targeted as a likely site for crime, law enforcement may not be inclined to presume the innocence of anyone within it and may react accordingly.

Source: Deseret News, “Utah firm unveils new crime-fighting technology,” Jasen Lee, Aug. 31, 2013

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