This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Sandy • On Monday, the day after 49 people were gunned down at an Orlando, Fla., nightclub, analysts with Utah's Statewide Information and Analysis Center (SIAC) participated in a national conference call to learn more about the attack.
As one of 78 public-safety partnerships, or fusion centers, in the nation, SIAC collects and analyzes reports on criminal and potentially terrorist activity. It disseminates the intelligence to law enforcement agencies.
The primary goal of the network is to protect the public by sharing information on potential threats, according to Maj. Brian Redd of the Utah Department of Public Safety, which helps oversee SIAC's operation.
The centers also are set up to help investigate and respond to attacks, he said. All 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands each have a fusion center, and 25 cities also have their own.
In addition to terrorism, SIAC's other focus areas include gangs, drug and human trafficking, and cybercrime, Redd said.
Utah's SIAC is housed in the state's public safety building in Sandy, and its partners include Homeland Security, the FBI and local police departments and sheriffs' offices.
The gunman in the Sunday massacre at Pulse, a gay club, is Omar Mateen, an American-born Muslim described by the FBI as a homegrown extremist. The New York Times has reported that Mateen called 911 shortly before the attacks and pledged allegiance to the radical Islamic State group.