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Chicago Police Open New Strategic Center To Track CTA, Downtown Crime

Officers can use technology and experts to create strategies to prevent and solve crime in the district and on the CTA.

Chicago Police Supt. David Brown at a Thursday news conference.
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DOWNTOWNA new police center in the South Loop will give officers more technology and expert tools to track and prevent crime in the area and on public transit.

Supt. David Brown announced the opening of the Strategic Decision Support Center at a Thursday press conference. The center will be based in the 1st District, which covers parts of the Loop, South Loop and Near South Side.

These centers now are in 21 of the 22 police districts in Chicago, according to Police Department press release.

The center tracks footage from thousands of cameras throughout the district, including cameras from the Chicago Transit Authority network — a “unique” feature for this one given its focus on the CTA, Brown said. Officers will also have access to license plate readers to identify suspicious vehicles.

The newest center was created in response to recent crimes on buses and trains, including a shooting at the UIC Blue Line station and the killing of a man in a CTA tunnel in February.

Brown said bringing together resources to create strategies on crime prevention will be a “game-changer” for the district.

“Officers will be able to collaborate by merely swiveling their desk chairs,” Brown said.

The Police Department opened two Strategic Decision Support Centers in 2017 to prevent neighborhood violence and crime. By January 2018, the department had started centers in 11 more districts.

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