The U.S. Department of Justice has awarded the city of Washington in Beaufort County $191,000 for gang and drug prevention efforts.
City officials say the money will allow the police department to dedicate an investigator to intensively follow-up on the intelligence and data gathered by the Department during Project Next Step which has been underway for the past two years.
Project Next Step provided Washington with funds to hire and train a project coordinator who is working closely with neighborhood residents in a Community Oriented Policing program. It also provided initial funds to purchase hardware, software and cameras which assist the Washington Police Department in gathering information on criminal activity in Washington neighborhoods and linking it to intelligence which exists in national and regional databases.
The Department of Justice grant will also provide funds to purchase and deploy advanced technology to gather criminal activity intelligence and to share the data with other law enforcement agencies.