The city of Girard police will receive new technology aimed at expediting investigations. The department will add a digital forensic lab to its unit.

John Freeman, Girard police captain was announced as one of six global winners of a Magnet Forensics Scholarship Award. As a result, the Girard Police Department will receive the technology they need to set up a laboratory, free of charge for one year. 

Freeman says this software will help investigators clear cases more efficiently. The department will be able to recover and analyze evidence from suspected hard drives, mobile devices and digital videos. Freeman says trails of digital data from crimes like robberies and hit skips are more prevalent now than ever before.

"It's pretty important right now for us as a profession, considering how prevalent digital evidence is coming in just about every case we're dealing with," Freeman told 21 News. 

The digital forensics lab will be one of few in the area. As many departments in the Valley face staffing shortages, Freeman says they're hoping to share the software with local departments in the future.

Freeman says the funding will finance 12 months of training through Magnet Forensics  along with a license to their software. 

After the first year, Freeman hopes to subsidize the cost of the software with state and federal grants. Freeman expects the lab to be in effect this summer.