Penn State institute to co-host international anti-crime convention

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Many police departments around the country use fake Facebook profiles to connect with would-be criminals online, monitor their activity and conduct stings.

For some, social media is a useful weapon in the fight against crime. At an upcoming international symposium, “Policing in the 21st Century,” an expert from Canada and a Texas police chief will train attendees on how to use social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter to fight crime and to interact with the public.

The two-day international leadership conference, sponsored by Penn State’s Justice and Safety Institute (JASI) and the Atlantic Police Academy, a law enforcement training institution in Canada, will take place May 17-18, 2013, in Arlington, Va.

The fourth annual conference is expected to draw law enforcement officials, government leaders and educators from across North America.

“Social media is not going away and it’s just another example of how policing has been impacted in the 21st century,” said Joe DeStefano, conference facilitator and JASI client and business manager. “We have to become more adept at using it.”

Other topics on the agenda include bridging the gap of communication between law enforcement officials and government officials, and training officers to catch the growing number of internet-savvy criminals.

Increasing budget cuts and counterproductive relationships between law enforcement officials and government leaders can sometimes create a challenge in fighting crime, DeStefano said.

“The aim of this conference is to help law enforcement officials get the training that they need to interact more efficiently with government officials,” he said. “By improving these relationships, they can provide greater service to the community.”

The conference will be held at the Westin Arlington Gateway Hotel from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Friday, May 17, and 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 18. 

For more information and to register for the conference, visit www.jasi.outreach.psu.edu online.

Penn State’s Justice and Safety Institute (JASI) has helped thousands of law enforcement and justice system professionals improve their work skills for decades. JASI is part of Penn State Outreach, which serves more than 5 million people each year, in all 67 Pennsylvania counties, all 50 states and more than 100 countries worldwide.

Atlantic Police Academy (http://www.hollandcollege.com/atlantic_police_academy/), a division of Holland College, is a pre-eminent law enforcement training institution in Canada. Offering both full-time and in-service programs, the academy trains men and women who want to enter the field of law enforcement and offers advanced training to dedicated law enforcement professionals who need to upgrade their skills or to acquire new skills in order to effectively apply new technology in their jurisdictions.

Credit: Penn StateCreative Commons

Last Updated October 11, 2012