Cook County State’s Attorney Kimberly M. Foxx announced today the release of over six years of felony criminal case data on the Cook County Open Data Portal. The release, the first of its kind in the country, provides unprecedented access and transparency into the work of a prosecutor’s office. The State’s Attorney’s Office also released its 2017 data report, summarizing the work of the office in the past year.
“For too long, the work of the criminal justice system has been largely a mystery” said State’s Attorney Foxx. “That lack of openness undermines the legitimacy of the criminal justice system. Our work must be grounded in data and evidence, and the public should have access to that information.”
The case-level data release, available at cookcountystatesattorney.org/caseleveldata, goes back to roughly 2010. It contains four user-friendly tables, each documenting a key phase in a case’s movement through the office: Intake, Initiation, Dispositions, and Sentencing. The data tables have been redacted of personally identifying information, but include unique numerical identifiers so cases, defendants, and charges can be followed through the different tables.
“Open data is a hallmark of good government, and this data release represents a significant step forward for the use of open data in prosecution,” said Matthew Saniie, Chief Data Officer for the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office. “These tables contain over 45 million data points, representing over 300,000 distinct cases, which is a huge amount of data for a government entity to make available to the public.”
“I sought this office committed to building the most open and transparent prosecutor’s office in the country. I am proud to be taking the lead on open data, and hope that many of my fellow prosecutors around the country will join me in this effort to be truly transparent and accountable to our constituents. The public deserves nothing less,” said State’s Attorney Foxx.