Science and Technology News

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Public Safety Technology in the News



Law Enforcement News

PD: Bulletproof Vest Saved Northglenn Police Officer's Life
Denver Post, (12/19/2015), Elizabeth Hernandez

A Northglenn (Colo.) police officer survived multiple gunshot hits during an early morning traffic stop thanks to his ballistic-resistant vest. During the stop, an unidentified man left the vehicle and began shooting at one of the officers, and the officer returned fire, police said. The officer was taken to a local hospital and was treated and released. The suspect remains in critical condition.
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New Miami Rolling Out Hand-Held Speed Cameras
Journal-News, (12/21/2015), Lauren Pack

The village of New Miami, Ohio, will use new LIDAR technology featuring a camera mounted to a hand-held radar device. Full-time police officers will use the devices to monitor traffic; a violation captured by the camera will result in a fine to the registered owner, but no points for a specific driver and no notification to the registered owner's insurance company. 
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Mashantucket Police to Begin Full-Time Use of Body Cameras in January
The Day, (12/26/2015), Lindsay Boyle

Officers in the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Police Department in Connecticut are among the latest law enforcement personnel to use body cameras. The almost 30-member department began exploring camera options more than a year ago. Police department officials said the tube-shaped cameras will likely be mounted on officers' shoulders. Wireless camera battery packs sit in the user's chest pocket.
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The FBI's New Cyber 'Tool' Has Four Legs and a Tail
New Jersey 101.5, (12/27/2015), David Matthau

The Federal Bureau of Investigation in New Jersey will soon be getting a specially trained dog to help thwart cyber crime. New Jersey FBI Special Agent Celeste Danzi said the dog will be able to sniff out thumb drives, hard drives and cell phones if they are hidden or disguised. Dogs can be used in a variety of investigations that involve a digital data search.
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Illinois State Police Say Drones Are a Success
St. Louis Public Radio, (12/28/2015), Rachel Lippmann

The Illinois State Police has been deploying its drones mostly at accident scenes, for a total of 48 hours of flight time. The state police was the first agency in Illinois to obtain permission to use an unmanned aircraft system (UAS) and has flown nearly 50 missions since May 2015. Capt. Matt Davis, the commander of the Illinois State Police's crime scene services command, said using UAS to capture aerial photos and accurately document scenes quickly allows police to open roadways sooner. The department has two drones and hopes to expand the fleet to reduce response time to accident scenes.
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A Voluntary Security Camera Registration Program is Helping the Verona Police Department Solve Criminal Investigations
NorthJersey.com, (12/29/2015), P.J. Candido of the Verona-Cedar Grove Times

Citizens and businesses in Verona, N.J. are responding positively to a voluntary program to register their surveillance systems to potentially help police solve crimes. Verona Police Department Det. Anthony O'Connor said about 10 residents have officially signed up, but more residents have helped the department by offering camera footage upon request from the department. He said about 30 businesses have registered.
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31-Camera Network Set to Keep an Eye on Downtown
LaCrosse Tribune, (01/04/2016), Anne Jungen

A Wisconsin police department will switch to a new digital radio system this year to expand coverage. The current system covers about 70 percent of the city; the upgrade to the system used by most city departments covers about 98 percent. Officers will have their own radio and dual band radios in squad cars. Encrypted channels will block the public from eavesdropping on police communications. In addition, in January, a network of 31 police surveillance cameras will be monitoring the city's downtown.
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Corrections News
Program Connects Prisons with Nature
Voice of America, (12/15/2015), Tom Banse

Inmates in some prisons in the United States are rearing endangered plants and animals for release into the wild. Through Washington State's prison environmental program, nurseries have raised 64 different plant species for restoration of South Puget Sound prairies. The program has also partnered with Northwest zoos and state and federal agencies to rear endangered animals. At one facility, inmates raise the endangered Taylor's checkerspot butterfly from larvae for release into the wild.
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Bill Proposes Using GPS on Restraining Order Violators
KRQE News 13, (12/29/2015), Shelby Perea and Alex Goldsmith

A bill introduced in the New Mexico state senate would place people caught violating a restraining order on GPS monitoring so their movements could be tracked. The bill would create a pilot project in Bernalillo County. If the offender is found to cross the boundaries set by the judge, the victim and police will be notified. The bill sets aside $150,000 to pay for two years of the program.
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Vt. Unveils Drug Treatment Program for Inmates
Burlington Free Press, (12/01/2015), Elizabeth Murray

A Vermont correctional facility is beginning a pilot program to offer opiate-addicted inmates an anti-addiction drug. Inmates scheduled for release from the Marble Valley Correctional Facility in Rutland will be offered naltrexone, a monthly injection that blocks the effects of certain drugs. Inmates eligible for the voluntary medicine-assisted treatment program will most likely begin treatments one month before release to ease the transition back into the community where opiates are more available. Participants will also get addiction recovery counseling and care management services.
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New Pilot Program Introduced for Inmates in the Sanilac County Jail
Huron Daily Tribune, (12/24/2015)

The Sanilac County Sheriff's Office in Michigan has begun a pilot program to provide inmates with tablet computers. The program is expected to equip jail staff with additional strategies to assist in behavior modification and give inmates tools to reduce recidivism. These tools include job search capabilities, access to select and monitored library resources and materials to help the inmates work toward their G.E.D.
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