Chatham County DA’s Office Gets Go Ahead for Gang Database


Technology can do a lot of things, but it can’t stop a bullet.

But Chatham County District Attorney Meg Heap believes it could help stop a gang member who may be a the shooter or take the gun out of his or her hands.

“These are our most violent people committing our most violent crimes and we need to take them off the street,” explained Heap.

Heap was officially approved today to spend $50,000 Worth of seized drug money to help create a gang database.

The plan is to take the information officers on the streets know, put it in the computer and combine it.

“They have that information and they keep it with them so when they walk the beat,” explains Heap. “But if they get moved to another area it gets lost because its kept in a notebook.”

So when its created, the database allows everyone can find a gang member and his associates with the click of a mouse.

The hope would be to get to the gang members before they can strike again.

“We know people are working together and one of the things we readily admit, when a shooting or some type of violence occurs, we then see some type of retaliation,” said Meg Heap. “If we can stop the first one great, the second one that would stop the retaliation of the third and fourth and fifth.”

The other half of the money for the database was provided by the Governor’s office of prosecution.

As part of the program, a gang prosecutor position was created to prosecute in both Superior and Federal court.

Heap hopes to have the entire program up and running in the next month.

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