According to multiple news outlets, late one Friday night / early Saturday morning, just after midnight, a Lamar County GA Sheriff’s Deputy received a call about a domestic disturbance. He pulled up to the house, and as he exited his patrol car, he was greeted with “numerous shotgun blasts.”
The shooter jumped into a white pickup truck and drove away.
Someone called emergency services and the deputy was taken to a nearby hospital where he recovered, but the suspect was long gone.
While the gruesome details of an unsuspected shotgun blast may be rare, stories with offenders fleeing the scene of the crime happen all too often.
We first launched Flock Safety in 2017 with a mission to eliminate nonviolent crime. Garrett Langley, our cofounder, lives in a neighborhood where there was a string of break ins. Garrett called the precinct captain to ask what to do about the crime, and the captain told him to look into a license plate reader. The only ones on the market were ~$25k per unit and had some unethical policies around collection, retention, and use of the data.
Garrett, being an electrical engineer, got together with Matt, a software developer, and they built the first prototype for Garrett’s neighborhood. 60 days later, they gave evidence to police to make an arrest.
Fast forward to today, and nonviolent property crime has not gone away. The good news is that Flock Safety has thousands of license plate readers across 700 cities in the US, and neighborhoods + local law enforcement work together with a community policing mindset to solve dozens of crimes every single day.
But what about cross-jurisdictional crimes, like the ambush shooter in Lamar County?
According to the reports, the suspect was arrested in Pell City, AL - about 170 miles and in another state from where the first incident took place.
The challenge is that sharing this type of information with other agencies can prove incredibly difficult. And timing is everything. But take a look the route the suspect drove:
Each blue dot represents a Flock Safety camera. The suspect drove past nearly 100 license plate readers when he was ultimately arrested in Pell City Alabama.
“Flock Safety works on an interconnected system,” said Chief Irwin of Pell City Police, “allowing us to view footage from other jurisdictions. That’s a huge advantage.”
With more and more use cases like this, we developed TALON - the Total Analytics Law Officers Network.
TALON is a local and national network of ALPRs for law enforcement who want to verify a specific license plate’s location. Get access to local and national vehicle reads each month so you can gather the evidence you need to close more cases.
We built TALON with law enforcement in mind, and with a new ethical framework for how to leverage the footage. By default, all the footage automatically expires every 30 days on a rolling basis. Additionally, to use the service, each Flock Safety partner agency must opt in to either the local or national sharing feature.
There’s no live view so that is no monitoring of vehicles and we don’t, and have never, used facial recognition technology. As always, Flock Safety does not access the footage or share it with third parties.
TALON gives law enforcement the opportunity to solve more cross-jurisdiction crime, while doing so within an ethical framework.
Learn more about TALON, at www.flocksafety.com/TALON or reach out to someone on the Flock Safety team.