Biometrics Bolsters Equipment Accountability

It's a tough day on the job when a critical piece of equipment goes missing.

Accountability and credibility are two important benefits this chief says the BACS system provides. The kiosk computer keeps an electronic log of each weapon or other items stored in the rail and locker.

At any time, administrators can see who took what item and when. A complete history of any item is available, from date of acquisition to date of termination.

Remote access from anywhere on the network allows management to print reports in minutes, to answer questions of maintenance, possession, or any other issue that may arise with a piece of equipment.

BACS is a benefit to administrators, as well as line officers, says Dwyer. It makes everyone's job less complicated, more efficient, and gets officers where they need to be — on the streets.

More time and space
An added benefit of the BACS enables maintenance checks to be scheduled in advance, then send an e-mail to the system administrator at time of service.

Whether it's every 90 days, or 100 shifts, the system is customizable to an agency's already-established protocols.

The liability it provides is another large plus for agencies. "When you get into a situation where the courts are involved, the first thing a defense attorney is going to ask is for the history of that weapon," says Hoff. "All that is automatically logged by this system."

Space is a precious commodity in police storerooms. The BACS system organizes assets as well as lessens the space needed to store them. "It doesn't take up any more room than what we had before," says Dwyer. "It's very compact."

Hoff suggests agencies even keep the system right in their briefing rooms. A separate armory room is no longer needed, as each locker and rail is individually secured.

The company assists departments during the installation process, which includes marking all items with RFID chips, and also documenting each officer's fingerprints into the computer.

The Farmington Hills PD is a pilot for this patented system. LEID personnel worked with the agency's special supports division to explain the ins and outs prior to full activation.

"The big thing is we go in and help the department set up a strategy," says Hoff.

Currently, the day shift is 100-percent functional using the biometric equipment system. The afternoon and evening officers are being phased in as well. "We're finding it to be extremely beneficial in cutting down the need to have a superior disperse the equipment," says Dwyer.

Biometrics has made just another large step in lightening a police chief's workload, while offering a sense of security and accountability to his agency.

In an industry where time is never enough, he and his officers have gained a few more minutes.

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