Where do the good ideas come from?
In this column, we offer our readers the opportunity to learn about — and benefit from — some of the cutting-edge technologies being implemented
by law enforcement colleagues around the world.
Texas Agency to Acquire High-Speed Wireless System
Sierra Wireless announced that it has provided next-generation wireless technology to law enforcement professionals in Texas. The Harris County Sheriff's Office, one of the oldest law enforcement agencies in Texas, is in the process of outfitting approximately 600 patrol vehicles and 300 detectives with a high-speed mobile solution powered by the Sierra Wireless AirCard 555. The new wireless system will replace an existing system and is designed to help officers retrieve critical information in the field with CDMA2000 1X technology from Sierra Wireless.
"In order to empower our front-line police officers and increase officer safety and performance, we turned to a next-generation wireless solution from Sierra Wireless," said Major Mike Smith of the Harris County Sheriff's Office. "The migration process from the AirCard 300 to the AirCard 555 is seamless and the enhanced service went beyond our expectations. We continue to select Sierra Wireless products because of their reputation in the industry and their ability to provide reliable mobile solutions. Our officers count on the AirCard to help them do their jobs effectively with increased access to critical information across a broader coverage area."
Law enforcement agencies across North America are now leveraging recently deployed next-generation wireless networks to implement systems that provide officers with the critical information needed to improve safety and response times. Harris County's recent transition from the cellular digital packet data (CDPD) wireless network to the faster and more reliable next-generation CDMA2000 1X wireless network ensures they have greater coverage and access to the higher speeds needed to implement data-intensive applications such as access to maps and photographs. The AirCard 555 operating on high-speed wireless networks is designed to help law enforcement professionals benefit from the capabilities wireless technology offers in the field with direct wireless access to motor vehicle and warrant information and federal, state, and local databases.
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Jersey Police Select PI Vision's Digital Video Recording Solution
PI Vision announces that the States of Jersey Police in the United Kingdom has selected the company's Universal Video Management System (UVMS) to form the digital recording backbone of its soon-to-be-upgraded CCTV system. Covering police headquarters and the town of Saint Helier, in Great Britain's Channel Islands, the system currently uses an analog recording system comprising a number of time-lapse VCRs. Systems integrator ADT has been selected to upgrade the system from analog to digital, with work commencing in March 2004.
Jersey Police has been researching the digital video recording market for two-and-a-half years and prepared a very demanding performance specification in preparation for tendering for the new DVR system. In particular, the system had to be capable of handling 60 camera inputs at 25 frames per second, at full resolution (4CIF), and with full-frame refresh, something that not many systems were able to achieve. The system also had to be easy to use and provide instant retrieval of video footage from any camera.
The ability to use frame-by-frame playback in forward and reverse was also an important consideration, especially when analyzing footage from incidents. Jersey Police ruled out the use of video motion detection to trigger video recording, requiring instead that the DVR provide continuous recording on all cameras 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Gary Buesnel, head of communications for Jersey Police, said, "The key issues are picture quality, recorded image integrity and authentication, and a reduction in the amount of officer time spent when retrieving archive recordings."
The system architecture is designed to ensure that there is no single point of failure, and components can be distributed to various locations and linked together over a network, with benefits in terms of security, space planning, and bandwidth management.
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Portland Police Bureau Selects Crime Data System
ImageWare Systems Inc. announces that the Portland, Oregon, Police Bureau has selected the company to expand its existing Crime Capture System (CCS) to enable Web-based investigations and provide an enhanced data sharing platform with the Multnomah County Sheriff's Department. As part of the implementation, the Portland Police Bureau will also leverage ImageWare's CCS to create and produce all employee identification cards.
"We are very excited about this upgrade and look forward to conducting Web-based investigations using our secure intranet and mobile data terminals, as well as housing our own criminal data which will include data from the Multnomah County Sheriff's Department," said Captain Greg Hendricks of the Portland Police Bureau. "Our officers now have the tools they need to speed the investigative process and access criminal booking data remotely."
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