Police tech helped catch wanted ex-teacher

February 24, 2011 3:20:01 PM PST
A former elementary school teacher wanted for numerous burglaries was arrested earlier this week thanks, in part, to a new piece of technology.

The Evesham Police Department in New Jersey has $20,000 license plate reading system recently acquired with grant money.

Using 3 infrared cameras mounted front and side on a patrol car lightbar, the system is continually snapping images of tags and comparing them with information on criminal databases.

"The camera is reading constantly, it's reading every license plate within its proximity. And what happens is if it gets a hit from the information it received from the server it's going to alert the officer," said Ptl. Thomas Campbell of the Evesham Police Department.

? "In less than a week of the license plate readers on the road full time it's had numerous hits," said Patrolman Jeremy Borden.

? On Wednesday, the system alerted police to a car driven by armed fugitive Michael Innaurato, an ex-school teacher wanted in Pennsylvania for a series of burglaries.

? "Our officer on routine patrol was able to arrest a very dangerous, violent suspect," said Campbell.

Even rolling through the parking lot at the?township complex?there was a hit on a car from the DMV database.

The technology can be useful to police in a number of ways: recovering stolen vehicles, identifying suspended and revoked drivers and Amber Alerts are just a few.

? Other towns like Willingboro, Greenwich and Paulsboro already use the system, which can read plates at any time of the day, in any weather and at high speeds.