Three Colorado District Attorneys’ (DA) offices—the 12th, 17th, and 21st Judicial Districts—unveiled “data dashboards” last month. The dashboards are a publicly available resource designed to promote more effective, just, and transparent decision-making in prosecution. This expands the reach of the Colorado Prosecutorial Dashboards project, building on the initial eight Judicial Districts that unveiled data dashboards last fall (see related blog post). Colorado is first in the nation to move toward statewide implementation of prosecutorial data dashboards.
Collectively, the 11 Judicial Districts participating represent half of the counties in Colorado (32) and 71% of the state’s population. The remaining districts will have the opportunity to create data dashboards as the project transitions to the Colorado District Attorneys’ Council for ongoing management this fall.
Community members can access the data to gain a better understanding of the work their DA’s office does, including trends in cases filed and resolved over time, patterns in how individuals are treated, and how they are addressing serious crime and protecting and serving victims. Offices will use data from the dashboards to improve their understanding of case outcomes for similarly situated defendants, identify promising practices and programs, and determine areas where practice change could be useful.
“It is exciting to see this expanded commitment to data-driven decision-making in Colorado,” said Lauren Gase, PhD, senior researcher and project director for the Colorado Evaluation and Action Lab. “This project is about using data to both support transparency and inform ongoing decision-making. I am inspired by the great work of DA offices across the state who are using their data to identify opportunities to communicate with their partners and communities, improve case processing, and reduce disparities.”
To learn more about the Colorado Prosecutorial Data Dashboard project, contact Dr. Lauren Gase.