BATON ROUGE, La. - A team of crime researchers at Louisiana State University (LSU), along with District Attorney, Hillar Moore and BRAVE Project Director, Herbert "Tweety" Anny, spoke to the Baton Rouge news media on Tuesday, April 16, 2013 at 10 a.m. The researchers spoke about LSU's involvement in the Baton Rouge Area Violence Elimination Project (BRAVE).
BRAVE was created to reduce and eliminate violent crime committed by juveniles, ages 14-17, in small communities within Baton Rouge. LSU acts as the primary research partner for BRAVE and is responsible for creating methods that will aid law enforcement in targeting and eliminating crime in specific areas. The research is conducted following the National Network of Safe Communities Strategy (GVRS), which theorizes that by targeting the small number of chronic offenders responsible for most of the crime in Baton Rouge, the offenders will begin to believe that the cost of committing the crimes outweigh the benefits.
As of now, BRAVE's targeted ZIP code is 70805, which alone compromises 13.5 percent of the Baton Rouge population and is accountable for 30 percent of the city's homicides. In an effort to lower this rate, LSU researchers have been assisting law enforcement by : 1) identifying the major offenders in 70805; 2) identifying offender's affiliation with specific groups and gangs; 3) analyzing the location and pattern of violent crimes committed by these offenders through Geographical Information Systems mapping; 4) tracking crime rates and trends over time, and 5) evaluating the outcomes of individual offender intervention and overall impact of BRAVE on the community.
Since BRAVE was introduced in June 2012, a crime analysis conducted over 12 months shows that the yearly homicidal rates are down 36 percent and monthly homicidal rates are down 45 percent. In addition, violent crime rates are also down by 16 percent and property rates are down by two percent.