May 20, 2022

Botu Linum

The Car & Automotive Devotees

Police use crime cameras to scan license plates in Cincinnati

3 min read

A growing number of Greater Cincinnati police departments are adding automatic license plate reading cameras to their toolbox. Hamilton Township police announced this week that 20 ALPR cameras are going up around the community, intended to alert police of stolen vehicles and wanted persons when they cross into the township. “These are not traffic enforcement cameras. They are not red-light cameras. They are simply scanning plates, scanning vehicles,” said Chief Scott Hughes, who said residents have had a lot of questions about the cameras’ capabilities and how they will be used.The cameras are provided by Flock Safety, a company that contracts with law enforcement, home owner’s associations and businesses. The company said it works with more than 1,200 police agencies in 40 states. The company told WLWT their technology cannot be used for traffic enforcement.”If you drive by a police car today and I run your license plate and you have a warrant out for your arrest, I’m going to get that information,” Hughes said. “The camera is just basically taking the place of the officer physically sitting there. We’re not chasing parking tickets. We’re not chasing minor violations.”The cameras alert police of stolen cars wanted suspects or vehicles connected to AMBER or silver alerts. The cameras scan every passing license plate and snap a picture of the car. About 15 seconds after the camera takes the photo, officers are alerted and receive the license plate number, a picture of the car and which camera detected it. The information is stored in a database for 30 days.“It’s like having 20 extra police officers out there,” Hughes said.Each camera costs $2,500 which translates to about $50,000 for the one-year contract.The cameras are becoming increasingly popular. Mt. Healthy, Blue Ash, Golf Manor, Franklin and Cincinnati police are some of the departments that utilize the ALPR technology.The cameras have been up and running in Blue Ash for about six months. Chief Scott Noel the cameras have helped solve over 30 crimes and incidents, including a missing person, shooting investigation and 15 stolen vehicle recoveries. Madeira police say they plan to install about ten Flock Safety cameras before summer.

A growing number of Greater Cincinnati police departments are adding automatic license plate reading cameras to their toolbox.

Hamilton Township police announced this week that 20 ALPR cameras are going up around the community, intended to alert police of stolen vehicles and wanted persons when they cross into the township.

“These are not traffic enforcement cameras. They are not red-light cameras. They are simply scanning plates, scanning vehicles,” said Chief Scott Hughes, who said residents have had a lot of questions about the cameras’ capabilities and how they will be used.

The cameras are provided by Flock Safety, a company that contracts with law enforcement, home owner’s associations and businesses. The company said it works with more than 1,200 police agencies in 40 states. The company told WLWT their technology cannot be used for traffic enforcement.

“If you drive by a police car today and I run your license plate and you have a warrant out for your arrest, I’m going to get that information,” Hughes said. “The camera is just basically taking the place of the officer physically sitting there. We’re not chasing parking tickets. We’re not chasing minor violations.”

The cameras alert police of stolen cars wanted suspects or vehicles connected to AMBER or silver alerts.

The cameras scan every passing license plate and snap a picture of the car. About 15 seconds after the camera takes the photo, officers are alerted and receive the license plate number, a picture of the car and which camera detected it. The information is stored in a database for 30 days.

“It’s like having 20 extra police officers out there,” Hughes said.

Each camera costs $2,500 which translates to about $50,000 for the one-year contract.

The cameras are becoming increasingly popular. Mt. Healthy, Blue Ash, Golf Manor, Franklin and Cincinnati police are some of the departments that utilize the ALPR technology.

The cameras have been up and running in Blue Ash for about six months. Chief Scott Noel the cameras have helped solve over 30 crimes and incidents, including a missing person, shooting investigation and 15 stolen vehicle recoveries.

Madeira police say they plan to install about ten Flock Safety cameras before summer.

https://www.wlwt.com/article/crime-cameras-license-plates-greater-cincinnati/39543141