In a large and industrialized country like America, crimes rates are always high. In order to protect the citizens from these unfortunate incidents, the government provided security in the form of the Police Department and the Federal Bureau Investigations (FBI). The FBI is an agency whose mission is to protect and defend the country from threats, as well as uphold the law, and provide criminal justices (Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2009). In lieu of this, the agency creates programs that may help accomplish this mission. One of the programs of the FBI is the ViCAp or the Violent Crime Apprehension Program.
This program originated from the idea of a local law enforcer and Mr. Pierce Brooks. Investigating a murder involving two women who replied to a modeling advertisement, the two concluded that the case at hand was not the first of its kind. Devising an earlier form of ViCAP in 1956, Mr. Brooks and the local law enforcer, had a man executed for the involved murders (Witziq, 2003). From the original idea of archiving cases and using it as a reference for later cases, the current version of ViCAP keeps the records of compiled and archived cases submitted in a computer database which may be accessed as basis for new crimes.
Its purpose and objective is to have different agencies and departments cooperating with each other and to provide storage for comparisons between past and current cases. Through it, similarities in cases may be easily gathered and serial crimes may be easily identified and analyzed (Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2008). ViCAP is a program that promotes cooperation and union of different departments and bureau’s; and as such, its administration is dependent on these agencies.
It used to function under the Department of Justice; however, as it is constantly improving, even allowing normal citizens to submit cases, the administration is brought on the shoulders of the departments that can access it (Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation). Several Departments may participate in ViCAP by submitting all cases being handled within a department as reference material in the constructed database. When a case comes in, the department may request for a ViCAP alert. This alert will be posted on the online FBI Bulletin with all the necessary information about it.
Similar cases from agencies may be sent to the contact person indicated in the ViCAP alert (Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2008). Through the communal efforts of all agencies, the investigation of a case may be quickened as every case will be tracked and recorded. It is of huge benefit to the departments especially when a criminal involved in a certain case travels and commits crimes from state to state. With a single database, these cases may be complied under one criminal suspect and profiling may subsequently lead to an immediate capture (Witziq, 2003).
- Federal Bureau Investigations. 2009. About Us- Quick Facts. Fbi. gov.Retrieved February 27, 2009, from http://www. fbi. gov/quickfacts. htm
- Federal Bureau Investigations. 2008. ViCAP GOES ONLINE And Closer to Investigators Who Need It. Fbi. gov. Retrieved February 27, 2009, From http://www. fbi. gov/page2/august08/vicap_080408. html
- Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation. Administration. Ok. gov. Retrieved February 27, 2009, from http://www. ok. gov/osbi/Administration/index. html
- Witziq, E. 2003. The New ViCAP More User-Friendly and Used By More Agencies. The FreeLibrary. Retrieved February 27, 2009, from https://www.thefreelibrary.com/The+new+ViCAP+more+user-%20friendly+and+used+by+more+agencies-a0105477694