JIS News

Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) in Charge of the Community Safety and Security Branch, John McLean, thinks that the introduction of automatic number plate recognition technology will improve the effectiveness of the police.
“There is a technology available to do automatic number plate recognition, so you can actually pick up car registration as they go pass and quickly identify individuals. This technology will allow the police to identify wanted persons, no vehicle registration, in addition to other things,” he disclosed in an interview with JIS News, Wednesday (January 20).
Noting that the new technology was already being piloted in Jamaica by a private organization, and could be very effective in many areas of crime fighting, ACP McLean added that these achievements will be possible through the use of a database, which will register all licensed and insured motor vehicles in Jamaica.
He further indicated that the automatic number plate recognition technology would work with the recently installed closed circuit TV and save time, as lawmen become more selective and police operations more intelligence driven.
“What it will do is, first of all, take a photograph of the car number, the software, then digitizes that, and you put that registration mark through any data base that you want and get the necessary information,” ACP McLean explained.
“It can make a list of the cars used by criminals, so rather than stopping all these cars, we will know which ones to stop and, if you are aware of people who own cars and have outstanding fines, you can easily pick them up”.
He said, however, that the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) was still searching for the resources to introduce the technology, this year.
ACP McLean outlined that another top priority of the Community Safety and Security Branch this year, is to heighten the partnership between the police, citizens and international donor organizations.
“We will be looking at how we can further enhance our partnership with the private sector, international organizations, business people and other government and non-governmental organizations. This is to help us work in partnership more effectively to make things happen,” he asserted.
“We will be more actively engaged with young people, through youth clubs in schools, so police youth clubs will be working closely with organizations who want to partner with us, making youth clubs more effective and efficient,” he disclosed.
Other initiatives to be undertaken in 2010, by the Community Safety and Security Branch of the JCF, include: development and expansion of community policing, such as training of staff internally; restoring the neighbourhood watches; development of crime prevention strategy campaigns; introduction of new and improved technologies; and working closely with the tourism sector.

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