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Home  >  Police Products  >  Technology

February 08, 2014
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High-tech gear quickly transforming police work

From laptops and smart phones to body cameras and increased firepower, policing has transformed within a generation

By Andrew Blankstein
NBC News

Cops of today have far greater resources at their fingertips, including hardware and software that used to reside at the station house. A police cruiser now typically is equipped with at least one laptop, giving instant access to national criminal databases, as well as portable fingerprint scanners, Breathalyzer units and automatic license-plate-reader technology that can identify stolen cars while cruising down the street, even at a high speeds. And while not department issued, personal smart phones and, specifically, policing-related apps are expanding officers’ one-stop data search capabilities.

But experts and veteran law enforcement officials say that straight-forward mission is rapidly giving way to a more complex and nuanced form of policing. It’s a world in which technology and instant communication help that beat cop serve and protect, while simultaneously demanding new levels of training and accountability and raising serious civil liberties concerns.

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"It's like the difference in getting across the country on horseback like the pioneers did or flying in a jet from New York to California," Tyler Izen, president of the Los Angeles Police Protective League, which represents some 10,000 officers, said of the rapid-fire changes sweeping police departments across the country. "And it's happened in the span of a career."

Full Story: Meet the Mega Cops: High-Tech Crime Gear Transforms Police Work



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