Criminal Strategies Unit

The Crime Strategies Unit (CSU) uses data and 21st century technology to fight crime. The CSU works closely with the Baltimore Police Department, other law enforcement agencies and members of the community to identify the groups and individuals most responsible for committing crimes that impact our communities, from violent crimes to low-level, quality-of-life offenses. The CSU then facilitates information sharing about these individuals and groups throughout the BCSAO and amongst all of our partners to inform bail recommendations, strengthen cases, and improve prosecutorial outcomes. The CSU is based on a similar model created by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office in New York.

One of the foundations of CSU’s strategic approach is the development of an Arrest Alert System within the BCSAO. Prosecutors are now alerted immediately when a person of interest is arrested for any reason. CSU staff coordinate with prosecutors at the Central Booking and Intake Facility (CBIF) to ensure that appropriate charging decisions and bail recommendations are made for these individuals. This ensures that persons of interest, whether they pose a danger to the community or are needed for an existing case, will not go undetected during the booking and intake process. The Arrest Alert System is distinct from the SAO’s War Room which also operates at CBIF. The War Room identifies violent repeat offenders, upon booking, and identifies the steps necessary to ensure those dangerous individuals are held pre-trial. The War Room’s criteria includes past criminal record, parole or probation status, and current charges. The Arrest Alert System identifies individuals who are known to law enforcement but may not meet the War Room’s criteria, such as a known gang member who has no prior arrests for violent crimes but is suspected of violence by local law enforcement.