10/29/06 — Computers will connect law enforcement agencies

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Computers will connect law enforcement agencies

By Lee Williams
Published in News on October 29, 2006 2:01 AM

The Wayne County Sheriff's Office will be adding a few more bells and whistles to their office computers and patrol cars that will help improve staff efficiency and increase officer visibility.

All law enforcement agencies in Wayne County including Wayne Memorial Hospital, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Cherry Hospital, Goldsboro, Walnut Creek, Fremont, Mount Olive and Pikeville will be linked under one computer system, Winders said.

"We will be the first in this state to connect all police agencies in this county under one system," Winders said. "They can look at our files, and we can look at their files. A lot of agencies are envious of that because they don't have that cooperation."

Linking the computer system was a goal Winders worked hard to accomplish. The system will give officers the opportunity to be more efficient, Winders said.

With the linked computer system, officers and deputies will be able to check to see if a person has filed criminal reports in the past or research what type of crimes the person has been involved in. But that's not all, Winders said.

"This will keep from letting the wrong people out," he said. "And they can find out if the people have warrants."

Winders said the same technology will be available in all patrol cars, but the computers in the patrol cars will come complete with a talk back voice command feature. The new technology is being installed in 20 patrol cars, Winders said.

"He can run the license number, and he won't have to look down at the screen," Winders said. "It's going to say 'This car is registered to ... You have warrants pending ... I'm proud of that. That's going to help us out a whole lot."

Winders said he also will be the first in the state to have computers with talk back voice command in the patrol cars.

"Instead of calling dispatch and having them look it up, he can look it up," he said.

The new system will save taxpayers money, help decrease dispatchers' workload and increase officers' productivity, Winders said.

Winders said deputies also will be able to do photo lineups in their patrol cars, which will help the officer ensure that the name the offender gives is his or her own when stopped by the law.

Winders said deputies also will have the ability to access the Internet in their patrol cars.

The whole purpose of the new improvements is to increase officer visibility, Winders said.

"He'll be able to work out of his car just as good as he can work out of that office," he said.