A homicide investigation collaboration between the FBI and Los Angeles Police Department has proven highly successful, with 27 cases resolved in just three months, reports the L.A. Times. The effort began July 1 and teamed six FBI agents with a few dozen LAPD homicide detectives. With the agents came half a dozen vehicles, computer equipment and access to the FBI’s forensic laboratory and surveillance gear. The FBI also covered the LAPD detectives’ overtime costs, allowing them to avoid a policy that sends officers home on forced leave when they accrue too many hours of additional work.
“I’ve been doing this for a long time and I’ve never seen anything like this,” said LAPD homicide Det. Sal LaBarbera. “We were able to clear cases at a pace that we never would have been able to hit. Twenty-seven homicides in three months? That’s unheard of.” The money “kept us working – allowed us to stay at it unrestricted, in the way we need to. Without it, we would have been stuck keeping regular office hours,” LaBarbera said. Detectives and agents first focused on 13 recent killings with strong leads and a good chance of quick arrests. The scope of the project expanded as the agents began joining detectives at fresh crime scenes. In all, the teams worked on 78 homicides.