Deputies to use data to crack down on high crime and traffic areas

One of the "hot spots" identified by the sheriff's office.

The Florence County Sheriff's Office announced Monday that it is implementing an innovative crime suppression and criminal patrol model known as Data Driven Approaches to Crime and Traffic Safety (DDACTS).

The goal is to reduce crime in vehicle crashes and targeted areas.

Deputies identified 16 communities in Florence County with higher numbers of crime and traffic problems through location-based crime and traffic crash data.

Deputies will focus on four of those communities, known as hot spots, for the time being.

The areas include: West Palmetto Street and Forest Lake near Brittany Drive and Arrowwood Subdivision; Tara Village off of Howe Springs Road; Glendale, Glencove and Greenbriar subdivisions off of East Palmetto Street; Williamson Road and the Camp Branch community off Highway 378 and Devonshire Road and North Matthews Road in Lake City.

Officers will be more visible in the hot spots which they believe will reduce both crime and car crash rates.

According to a news release from the sheriff's office there is a "clear correlation between vehicle crashes and incidents of crime."

The release says that since motor vehicles are used to transport criminals to and from a crime scene, it is not uncommon for those cars to be involved in crashes or cause crashes.

Over the next several weeks, residents can expect to see the traffic laws strictly enforced, not just by patrol units, but other Florence County Sheriff's Office divisions in both marked and unmarked patrol cars.

The Florence County Sheriff's Office is the first sheriff's office in South Carolina to implement the DDACTS program.

"We are excited about what DDACTS can do to reduce social harm in our communities," said Sheriff Kenny Boone. "In an era of increasing demand and limited resources, a model like DDACTS allows law enforcement the ability to do more without increasing costs. The success of DDACTS depends on the cooperation and involvement of the stakeholders in the community. We welcome the support of the various partnership groups and media as we implement this new exciting program."