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License Plate Reader Technology Tested by Muncie Police

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At $2,500 each, Flock Safety cameras aren’t cheap, so the city is embarking on a free trial the company offers before investing.

Muncie, Indiana — Another police department in central Indiana is considering license plate reader technology to help reduce crime.

The City of Muncie is preparing to deploy Flock Safety cameras on local streets in hopes of helping police solve crimes faster.

Suppressing crime is a top priority for Muncie Police Chief Nathan Sloan.

“The increase in crime, both locally and nationally, is trying to reduce violent crime in particular. Gun crime is a big concern to me and I have to stop it. To stop it,” Sloan said.

City and police leaders met at the Dream with Dan forum Thursday night to discuss plans to install 22 Flock Safety cameras across the city.

Cameras capture cars moving up and down the city’s arteries, capturing license plates and unique vehicle information. Then, when a crime such as a hit-and-run is reported, the police can use the collected evidence and information to retrieve images from the Flock system and solve the crime faster.

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“Now we can quickly go back to this system in real time and look for this car. “Because normally we would issue a BOL to look for this car and it could be missed due to human error,” says Sloan. “These don’t miss it.”

If you run the lights, Sloan said, you don’t have to worry about your ticket being mailed. These cameras are not intended for traffic enforcement and are not intended to be used. Instead, it is used to solve crimes such as robbery and construction theft, allowing detectives to work faster and more efficiently.

At $2,500 per camera per year, Flock Safety cameras aren’t cheap, so the city installed the new system with a free 60-day trial to make sure the system worked reliably, and put Flock’s cameras up and running in September. I plan to let you. Good for Muncie before investing the city’s money.

RELATED: IMPD announces crime-fighting technology upgrade

But with dozens of other Indiana and federal agencies already using the device to solve crimes, city leaders hope the device will make a big difference here, too. said.

Muncie Mayor Dan Leidener said, “We feel it’s worth the investment of time and, ultimately, the investment in equipment to improve police efficiency and improve public safety. We believe that this is very important to us.” .

Several police departments in Indiana have already invested in license plate reader technology, including IMPD, the Hancock County Sheriff’s Department, and the Zionsville, McCordsville, Noblesville, and Cumberland police departments.

Some school districts have boarded, like Clark Pleasant, which installed last year. Local police departments say they are already making a big difference.

Just a few months ago, cameras helped catch an Indianapolis man wanted for attempted murder. Prior to that, Pickwick helped identify the car of a suspected thief on the north side of Indy after landscaping supplies were stolen from the Commons area.

“[It]told me what the car looked like, the color, the make, the time, so I could watch the footage and get the car with the license plate. We have forwarded it to a vendor,” said Jason Parker, president of Pickwick Commons HOA.

The city currently has over 70 cameras and plans to add over 100 more.

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