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Rockland's District Attorney Public Safety Model Receives National Praise

Rockland County District Attorney Thomas P. Zugibe
Rockland County District Attorney Thomas P. Zugibe Photo Credit: Rockland County

CLARKSTOWN, N.Y. -- Rockland County District Attorney Thomas P. Zugibe's approach to public safety through the "Intelligence Led Community Policing, Community Prosecution and Community Partnerships (IL3CP)" program he developed, is getting praise from the U.S. Department of Justice.

The Justice Department called it an interesting and innovate way to coordinate efforts in the office's quest for safety and justice.

After seeing the results Zugibe's office was having with the program, the Justice Department's Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) initiated a study of the program and found that the effort, "increases collaboration...and although this ... assessment of crime reduction and public satisfaction are preliminary, the findings are promising."

“We are extremely honored by the recognition of our innovative efforts to keep communities safe,” Zugibe said. “But, while we always appreciate formal acknowledgement, it is the gratitude and positive reactions we receive from local residents and law enforcement that serve as the true inspiration. IL3CP and its strong partnerships produce consistently remarkable results.”

Launched in Rockland County in 2008, the program combines community policing, intelligence-led policing and community prosecution into a single model that connects the criminal justice system and local residents through seamless communication and partnerships.

By analyzing trends and gaining knowledge about crime patterns, criminals and community problems across the county, intelligence is developed that allows for smarter policing, prosecuting and community engagement throughout Rockland which contributes to a more effective approach to community safety.

The program worked so well, that in 2010, the COPS Office awarded funding to the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) to assess the county's program and explore its implementation in other jurisdictions across the nation.

With the help of the Justice Department and the IACP, police departments and prosecutors’ offices in Mesa, Ariz., Newport News, Va., and Saint Paul, Minn., each implemented Zugibe's IL3CP model.

After one year, all three towns reported dramatically reduced crime rates, with improved communication, collaboration and cooperation among police and prosecutors. Based on the impressive results in each location, the chief's organization described Zugibe's initiative as “a promising model of policing that has the potential to benefit both law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies throughout the nation.”

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