Researchers Jack McDevitt, of Northeastern University, and Janice Iwama, of American University, will provide a public presentation about their examination of pedestrian and traffic stop data in Douglas County. The presentation will be 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 10, in the auditorium of the Lawrence Public Library, 707 Vermont Street. The data has been collected in conjunction with the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council (CJCC) and with Douglas County law enforcement agencies. A panel discussion with local law enforcement leaders will follow the presentation. It will provide the community with an opportunity to hear from the researchers, hear from law enforcement and ask questions.
The CJCC and other stakeholders hired Northeastern University in 2019 to provide criminal justice research services through a $175,000 contract. McDevitt and Iwama helped develop and implement a program for documenting traffic and pedestrian stops in Douglas County. That process involved developing a leadership team, identifying existing data collection possibilities, developing training for law enforcement officers, establishing an audit process and analyzing data from more than 20,000 traffic and pedestrian stops. They began collecting data Jan. 1, 2020, from the KU Police Department, Lawrence Police Department, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Baldwin City Police Department and Eudora Police Department. McDevitt and Iwama have been analyzing data to determine if any racial and ethnic disparities exist, and they will be providing related recommendations.