Pooler Police Use Latest Technology To Fight Crime - Local news, weather, sports Savannah | WSAV On Your Side

Pooler Police Use Latest Technology To Fight Crime

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POOLER, GA -

Pooler's Police department isn't very big - but it is growing...rapidly - as the city around it expands. One of the benefits of having a smaller department can be a much smaller cost to outfit officers with the latest technology...one of the tools they're using is something not even Metro Police have yet - license plate readers.

About 70-thousand cars a day come through Pooler on the interstate - about 18-thousand on Pooler Parkway...and those numbers are growing. Officers in the city are being proactive in policing that growth.

“The beeping you hear and the scrolls of the pictures on the screen - this is every vehicle that we're passing by or that's passing by us,” says Officer Kaylah Jamison, who has been working with the technology for two years and won an award for her proficiency. She says, “The software that we use generates a "hot list" which is basically an excel spreadsheet - the excel spreadsheet will show everything from stolen cars, stolen tags, vehicle used in the commission of a crime - even amber alerts, missing persons, persons with warrants.”

The list is updated every day and cross referenced against the plates being read - at a rate of 18-hundred to 36-hundred tags a minute. It will send an alert if there's a match says Officer Jamison, “The alert comes up with a picture of the tag as well as a picture of the vehicle and tells you what direction that vehicle went in…I've got four cameras facing four different directions - so whether you're coming towards me or traveling away - I can catch all four lanes in both directions.”

Police say they recognize the public's concerns about privacy - but most people have nothing to worry about says Officer Jamison, “The reason we've acquired it is not really to start hassling people about their expired tag - but more so to look for the stolen vehicles, the stolen tags and especially the cars used in the commission of a crime…you know if somebody goes and commits a robbery at a gas station and the cashier says hey they left in a maroon impala and here’s the tag number…we can enter that tag into the system - if that car drives through Pooler and it picks up on my car, it will say hey - this car was used in a burglary you know - go ahead and see if you can make an investigative stop.”

When the system "hits" on a wanted tag - no personal information is given. The officer then contacts national and state crime information systems to make sure the information is still active and decides whether to go after that car. The license plate scans are recorded and kept for a period of time by a private company and are accessible only to law enforcement.

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