Justice seeks courts automation

The National Institute of Justice is seeking information about commercial off-the-shelf hardware and software that can help automate and integrate state and local criminal courts.

According to a July 18 request for information, NIJ is interested in finding out what technologies exist, with an eye toward possibly contributing to the field if future congressional funding is provided. NIJ is looking at systems and tools that promote non-proprietary technologies and formats that incorporate the Global Justice XML (Extensible Markup Language) Data Model.

Specifically, NIJ officials are interested in technology that enables agencies with criminal and quasi-criminal cases to share information through their own systems. They also want to see what technology can assist law enforcement officials, judges, prosecutors, public defenders, defense attorneys and court personnel to better manage caseloads, filings and orders more effectively and efficiently.

They are also looking for applications that:

* Helps speed a case to trial and its duration, eliminates recording and transfer of documents by hand, permits electronic filing or quick retrieval of documents and allows individuals at different locations to view documents collectively while ensuring data security.

* Enables those stakeholders to also better measure and manage their organizational performance.

* Helps litigants in criminal cases prepare witnesses and others in court proceedings, such as through automated witness preparation tools and litigation support tools, among other things.

* Automates and speeds up the preparation and presentation of applications, such as subpoenas, arrest and search warrants and other orders, and also preserves testimony and records.

* Increases access to court-related information, including performance data and orders and rulings, for attorneys, judges, law enforcement officials and the public whether it’s through the Internet, interactive kiosks or other technologies.

The RFI indicated no product demonstrations or marketing presentations will be scheduled. The deadline is Aug. 15.

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