2013: A law enforcement odyssey

As times change, so do approaches to policing. Since the days of handheld radios the size of bricks, handwritten reports and bulging metal file cabinets housing manila case file folders, modern law enforcement has gone digital, biometric and analytical...

What else is on the forefront?

Face it: While policies, tactics and firearms continue to evolve, one other aspect of police work is moving faster than a speeding bullet: technology. From firearms to tablets, smartphones to the software police now use to find and build strong cases against suspects, police are dipping more and more into areas that used to be reserved for science fiction.

What’s on the horizon? In addition to the innovations and changes we’ve already covered, here’s a look at what some top companies have in the works or are already producing:


What is it? Patented graffiti detection technology

Company: GraffitiTech Inc.

What it does: CEO Michael Neeley says for cities plagued by graffiti, this futuristic solution already launched in several cities targeted by graffiti “artists” saves the day. The GT-1 allows real-time detection, monitoring and notification of the police whenever this type of vandalism is underway. In the works: a newer version of the product featuring enhanced functionality.

“Within the first week of deployment, our units were responsible for the detection and apprehension of two of the city’s most active vandals,” says Manny Solano, Chief of Police, Watsonville (Calif.) Police Department. “Combined, the two suspects were responsible for well over $20,000 in damage in just our city alone. GraffitiTech’s product is well worth the investment and easy to use. The suspects were so surprised, the paint on their hands was still wet.”

Real-Time Crime Center for Proactive Policing

What is it? A method to harness relative data in order to provoke intelligent predictions and targeted counteractions.

Company: Motorola Solutions

What it does: Clint Quanstrom, vice president of Motorola’s Integration Services, says “With the Real-Time Crime Center solution from Motorola Solutions, law enforcement officers can now approach an incident armed with more operational intelligence than ever before.”

Motorola says the center employs information from multiple data sources such as video, sensors, alarms and computer-aided dispatch (CAD). Records are processed with real-time analytics to deliver one operational view. Advanced public safety analytics deliver intelligent data and video to anticipate crowd formations, recognize faces or detect gunshots to help agencies become more proactive, shortening response times and optimizing resource strategies.

It works by integrating existing agency records and databases with additional resources such as parole, national crime and inspections databases, together with information gleaned from court systems and evidence management to magnify the impact of the analytics engines. Streaming video can be shared between communications centers and responders. This advanced software enables interoperability across public safety, public service and private enterprise video systems, as well as analytics to trigger real-time alerts to significantly improve situational awareness.

This force multiplier is available now.

NICE Situator

What is it? A different slant on providing city surveillance centers with instant information about what’s happening and where.

Company: NICE Systems

What it does: Provides real-time alerting to facilitate streamlined responses, improved collaboration and allow better reconstruction of events, post-incident. The NICE Situator consolidates information from many different systems to provide intelligent alerting and streamlined responses. Citywide video surveillance can be combined with public and private video management systems (VMS) and accessed through one interface, allowing surveillance centers to significantly expand their intelligence assets and reach. In addition, gunshot detection, License Plate Recognition (LPR), weather systems, emergency/mass notification, traffic systems, access control, GIS and more can also be integrated.

  • Enhance your experience.

    Thank you for your regular readership of and visits to Officer.com. To continue viewing content on this site, please take a few moments to fill out the form below and register on this website.

    Registration is required to help ensure your access to featured content, and to maintain control of access to content that may be sensitive in nature to law enforcement.