May 28, 2024

How Richmond Police is using new technology to track down criminals

How Richmond Police is using new technology to track down criminals

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Richmond Law enforcement Division (RPD) is applying new technological know-how to fight every thing from targeted traffic violations to shootings in the town, and is now looking at benefits.

For the duration of a crime briefing before this month, RPD Acting Chief Rick Edwards declared the department’s use of license plate audience and firearm testing, equally of which he mentioned could speed up criminal investigations.

“It provides impartial investigative prospects and assists clear up all sorts of crimes,” Edwards said about the license plate visitors.

The license plate viewers are operated as a result of a program called Flock. The photo voltaic-run cameras sit on leading of black poles and seize “snapshots” of every vehicle that passes by it. It doesn’t history 24/7 as a surveillance video would, but it does set perhaps crucial details at the finger ideas of officers.

“Our officers can use their town-issued cell telephones to get alerts of stolen vehicles, Amber Alerts for missing kids, or they can use it after a crime to see which cars and trucks have remaining the scene,’ Edwards reported.

The department has invested in 36 flock cameras throughout the town. The office did not specify the precise site of the cameras, but say they are strategically put in higher crime neighborhoods. 8News located two of the cameras in the Fairfield and Mosby Courtroom spots.

“It’s a definitely beneficial software and pressure multiplier for us,” Edwards mentioned. “It’s a element of our strategy of leveraging technology to battle crime.”

In addition to Flock, the division is also employing a NIBIN machine, which stands for Countrywide Integrated Ballistic Data Network. The network is a partnership with the Bureau of Alcoholic beverages, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and supplies testing talents for each individual firearm discovered at a criminal offense scene.

“Every time a semi-automatic pistol or rifle fires, the cartridge is ejected,” Edwards said. “We match the microscopic facts, almost like a fingerprint, and it inbound links to other crimes,”

RPD has analyzed 1,611 firearms so considerably, and officials say the technology has currently led to an arrest in an officer-associated taking pictures. In December 2022, an officer was shot at inside a patrol auto in the city’s southside. Minutes later on, officers responded to a crash. As a result of NIBIN, the division was able to hook up the two incidents.

“While officers had been investigating the crash, they identified a gun that was regular with the casings they identified,” Edwards stated. “Within a single working day we were being ready to and connection them together and we ended up capable to demand Kevon Johnson with attempted cash murder of an officer.”

Detectives imagine this system could velocity up other investigations by months. Edwards mentioned this could make a huge change, since every single working day is essential throughout these investigations.

“We need brief turnaround on people scenarios, and with our personal NIBIN device we’re ready to get that,” he said.