Detective uses software to investigate Louisville's most violent - News, Weather & Sports

Detective uses software to investigate Louisville's most violent crimes

Louisville Metro Police Department Detective John Fogle Louisville Metro Police Department Detective John Fogle

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – Louisville Metro is trying it all -- a violence prevention task force, Viper Unit -- anything that might work to stop the city's violent deaths. Now, police have a full time detective working to try to understand what causes the violence.

Whether it's homicide victims or suspects Louisville Metro Police Department Detective John Fogle knows what led them to their current fate.

Since mid 2013, the homicide profiler and victim advocate has paid especially close attention to what's going on with those involved in the city's most violent crimes.

"I'm looking at everything from criminal history, family dynamic, whether anybody in the family had a criminal past, economic background, educational level," he said.

Using new software and spreadsheets he hopes to find patterns and links explaining what leads people to violent crime.

His work starts the day after each murder occurs.

"I will get all the information I can on the victim as well as the suspect or suspects, for that matter," said Detective Fogle.

For instance, Fogle knows 30 of the suspects and 30 victims in 2013's 48 homicides had a violent criminal history.

More of those crimes were motivated by domestic violence than drugs, and according to Fogle those crimes are happening all over the city, "It's happening in south Louisville, Churchill Downs, it's happening in Newburg, it's everywhere. It's not just the west end."

But that's only half of what he does each day. The other part is more personal. He helps homicide detectives talk to those left behind.

Fogle said, "I wanted to try to help victims understand that we haven't forgotten about you, the case is not put on the back burner and forgotten about. It is still being worked. But we need information."

That's where work and life intersect for Detective Fogle who at one point was a 6-year-old boy who lost his father.

"I'm 50 years old and my father's murder has never been solved. So I know what it's like to never understand why something happened," he said.

So now he searches for those answers in each of Louisville's homicides, hoping to make connections that lead to a lofty goal.

"Hopefully down the road we can prevent these crimes from happening," he said.

Detective Fogle just got his new software program, Analyst Notebook, to map out the links in December.  Eventually, he'll be able to help the entire homicide squad use the program to solve cases and present them in court. He said this software is being used by federal law enforcement and is similar to what military intelligence used to find links in the search for Osama bin Laden.

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