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Jim Martin honored with innovation and leadership award

Lehigh County District Attorney Jim Martin was honored May 23 by the Citizens Crime Commission of the Delaware Valley with the Inaugural Award for Law Enforcement Innovation and Leadership Excellence.

This was the first presentation of the award at the 42nd annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Day luncheon at the Bellevue Hotel in Philadelphia, the news release stated.

Matthew Deibert, president of Deibert Group LLC, noted in his nomination letter, Martin’s six terms as district attorney and Martin’s “vision to implement cutting-edge technologies and leading impactful community collaborations to increase the effectiveness and sustainability of law enforcement.”

•Martin’s development of the Lehigh County Regional Intelligence and Investigation Center, which began operations in 2013.

The center is directed by Julia Kocis, who manages the center’s personnel and consultants from Computer Aid Inc.

The RIIC integrates data from all police departments in the county as well as data from Northampton County. The center includes dozens of local, state and federal databases in one electronic crime-fighting resource, which has assisted in the investigation of numerous crimes and has dramatically enhanced the ability of law enforcement agencies to solve crimes.

Martin has been successful in obtaining more than $5.2 million in grants and other revenue to enlarge data sources integrated into the system.

The RIIC has partnered with Homeland Security Investigations in Washington, D.C., which is using its Gang Intelligence System for tracking transnational gangs. This resulted in a $1.1 million grant to Lehigh County for the RIIC to replicate the application.

Deibert set forth many other innovations and accomplishments of Martin and his team over his 25-plus years as district attorney in his nominating letter.

However, it was the RIIC which was the primary reason for the nomination.

“In my opinion, the best example of District Attorney Martin’s leadership and vision is the successful implementation of the RIIC,” he wrote. “In establishing the RIIC, Jim brought the same technology that powers the New York City Real-Time Crime Center to Lehigh County.

“Since its inception, the RIIC has been an indispensable asset to our region’s ability to fight crime, apprehend criminals and protect the public. It allows for the coordination of vital information between different law enforcement entities is essential to ensure public safety, pursue leads and solve crimes.

“The RIIC is a scalable technology solution that other Pennsylvania counties can utilize and should be given serious consideration by law enforcement leadership in Pennsylvania.”

Martin commented on his award.

“I am honored to have received this recognition from the Citizens Crime Commission of the Delaware Valley and accept it also on behalf of Julia Kocis, director of the RIIC, and our partners at Computer Aid Inc.,” Martin said. “Both have contributed greatly to the success of the center and to law enforcement in the Lehigh Valley.”

PRESS PHOTO COURTESY L.C. DISTRICT ATTORNEY'S OFFICE Santo Montecalvo, executive director of the Citizens Crime Commission of the Delaware Valley, District Attorney Jim Martin and John Appledorn, president of the Citizens Crime Commission of the Delaware Valley attended the award ceremony.