A New Lebanon, Ohio police car is now equipped with license plate reading technology, said New Lebanon Police Chief Rick Daulton.
Dual cameras have been mounted at the rear of the patrol car and can scan moving vehicles and those that are parked, Daulton said. “It reads every license plate it comes in contact with,” he added.
In addition to reading license plates, a photographic record and the GPS location is stored in the system’s onboard computer, which is mounted in the patrol car.
The system is designed to provide officers with an extra pair of eyes and perform some of the routine tasks that would otherwise be handled by the officer, such as scanning for stolen vehicles, or for vehicles sought by authorities, according to Daulton.
Providing an example of how the license plate reader can be a asset to the officer operating the patrol car, Daulton said the department obtains a list of stolen vehicles—known as the “hot sheet”—from the state police every 24 hours; if a license plate listed on the sheet is read by the reader, the officer is alerted.
In addition, the license plates of vehicles that are not stolen, but that need to be found, can be manually entered into the reader system, he said. For instance, if there were an Amber Alert and the license plate number of a vehicle were known, that license plate can be entered into the reader.