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OU Spatial Analysis Group Developing Suite of Tools for Monitoring and Analysis of Oklahoma Offenders

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

kh/9-18-13

CONTACT: Jana Smith Strategic Communications for R&D, (405) 325-1322, jana.smith@ou.edu 

NORMAN –The University of Oklahoma Center for Spatial Analysis has been developing a web-based tracking analysis application named TRACKS that facilitates Oklahoma parole and probation officers in the supervision of offenders on a GPS location-based monitoring system.  Location-based offender monitoring systems are widely adopted in Oklahoma and other states as a cost-saving alternative to incarceration for low-risk offenders.  OU teamed with the Oklahoma Department of Corrections on the project and the National Institute of Justice provided funding.

May Yuan, professor in the OU College of Atmospheric and Geographic Sciences, says OU uses offender location tracking points to develop a track analysis prototype that can mine GPS data for movement patterns and alert officers to offenders with potential behavior problems.  “There are two types of systems—real-time monitoring and passive,” says Yuan.  “OU uses a passive system that uploads data from the GPS monitoring device daily for analysis by the parole officers the next day.”

Yuan says, “We work closely with the end user to ensure the tools meet their needs by conducting multiple user tests to assure functionality and usability.”  The OU web-based tracking analysis application analyzes an offender’s movement on a daily basis, detects offenders who are in proximity to crime incidents and investigates unusual movement patterns.  The OU team includes Yuan, Atsushi Nara, geospatial scientist, Marguerite Keesee, sociologist, William Greenwood, IT analyst and web developer, and Meredith Denney and Grant Floyd, graduate research assistants.

Results from the project will have policy implications at both state and national levels.  The development of TRACKS will allow the diversion of offenders from incarceration to a community corrections setting, which will reduce prison overcrowding.  Additionally, TRACKS will begin the process of bringing together geospatial data for corrections and law enforcement agencies in a statewide integrated framework.  This will permit probation and parole staff to be proactive in identifying behaviors and “hot spots” that might not have been recognizable in the past and to intercede when offenders appear to be regressing back into old problematic behavior patterns.

At the end of the project, OU will make the tracking analysis application publicly available.  Corrections and law enforcement organizations interested in TRACKS will be able to download OU’s tools from a password-protected website.  The NIJ funded the project in 2010 for two years, then extended the project for another two years.  For more information about the TRACKS project, contact May Yuan at myuan@ou.edu.

 2013  |  2012  |  2011

April 2014

Mary Cotter-Lalli Receives the 2014 Regents' Award for Superior Staff at OU Health Sciences Center

University of Oklahoma Students Achieve Perfect Grade-Point Average

OU Drama Achieves National Honors

University of Oklahoma Student Business Team Achieves Top Honors in International Competition

OU Commencement to Feature CEO and Co-Founder of Teach For All, Photo Highlights of Graduating Class and Music

Alan Velie Named 2014 Otis Sullivant Award Winner

OU Pilot Program Advances Research in Arts and Humanities

OU to Establish Premier Center for Judaic and Israel Studies with Grant from Schusterman Family Foundation

Three OU Students Receive Boren Awards for International Study

Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History to be Awarded National Medal for Museum Service in White House Ceremony

Brad Burnett Receives the 2014 Regents' Award for Superior Staff

OU Designated Big 12 Conference Champion In EPA's College and University Green Power Challenge

OU Norman Campus Faculty Senate Adopts Resolution Against Guns on Campus

OU Licensing Department Achieves National Honors

2014 Staff Senate Awards Ceremony to be Held April 22

Five Outstanding Individuals to Receive Honorary Degrees at OU Commencement May 9

OU's Alexis Taitel Named Recipient of Truman Scholarship

2014 OU Staff Week to Include Daily Activities and Annual Awards Ceremony

OU History of Science Department Receives Sloan Foundation Grant to Build an Innovative Tool for Collaborative Research

OU Junior Rashid Campbell Wins Top Honors at National Debate Tournament

Norman Campus Provost Announces Intent to Resume Classroom Teaching; OU President David Boren to Recommend Kyle Harper as Interim Provost

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University of Oklahoma Student Business Team Achieves Top Honor in National Competition

CEO and Co-Founder of Teach For All to Deliver OU Commencement Address

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Akash Patel to Receive OU's Carl Albert Award

For requests for past releases, please contact OU Public Affairs at (405) 325-1701 or publicaffairs@ou.edu.