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Police Vehicle Equipment Press Release

April 07, 2008

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Syracuse School District is 1st in the Nation to use ELSAG’s Mobile Plate Hunter 900


ELSAG North America, the maker of the technology, to install equipment on a city school bus.

Syracuse, NY-ELSAG North America is pleased to announce that the Syracuse City School District will be using the Mobile Plate Hunter-900 to identify the license plates of cars illegally passing stopped school buses.  The MPH-900 System which is used by nearly 300 law enforcement agencies in 29 states across the country features progressive infrared cameras capable of scanning within seconds the license plates of passing cars, translating the digital pictures into data and then relaying that information to police personnel.

 “This technology has been well-received by law enforcement personnel in large urban metropolises, mid-size cities and rural towns all across America,” said Mark Windover, CEO of ELSAG North America, the maker of the MPH-900. “It has been instrumental in the conviction of murderers and in the apprehension of sex offenders violating parole.  Motorists who pass school buses present a real danger to the quality of life in our communities. We are pleased that the MPH-900 will be used for the first time in the nation by Syracuse, New York’s Schools to aid in the deterrence of these offenders.”

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The MPH-900 is being posted on one city school bus equipped with three cameras to cover lanes to the left and right of the bus.  Starting on Monday April 7, the technology will read only the license plates of cars that pass stopped school bus operators who are boarding or discharging passengers.  At the end of the day, police will review the plate captures compiled by the MPH-900.  They will then proceed to investigate anyone who violated the law.  The bus operator is in no way responsible for the collection of the data. 

The license plate reader is being subsidized by a grant from the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.  The New York Association for Pupil Transportation is managing the project.

ELSAG North America is a Finmeccanica company. Finmeccanica is a world technology leader in aerospace, defense, and homeland security.  “We plan to continue innovating invaluable technologies that serve both military and civilian entities,” said Dr. Stephen Bryen, President of Finmeccanica North America. “The MPH-900 is capable of gathering criminal intelligence whether the offender is a ticket scofflaw, a sexual offender, a drug dealer, an escaped convict or a terrorist.”  

The ELSAG mobile license plate reader is widely used in over 170 police departments throughout New York State including the Syracuse Police Department.

So far ELSAG’s Mobile Plate Hunter-900, a license plate recognition system has been instrumental in the following law enforcement actions:

  *After the alert sounded, an Atlanta police officer encountered an otherwise unsuspicious car and apprehended a homicide suspect, a recently released sex offender and three underage girls held against their will in the back seat.

  *The LPR placed an upstate New York man at the scene of the crime.  He was later convicted in the murder of a father, a mother and three small children.  This was the first time that evidence obtained through the use of LPR technology was used in a criminal procedure.

  * The Bronx District Attorney and New York City Police Officers who after the LPR system alerted them to a stolen car in their vicinity were able to find the body of a man who had been reported missing.

  *The arrest of two Wisconsin fugitives after they discarded a stolen car in New York.

  *The Arizona Department of Public Safety recovered more than $2 million in stolen cars in 2007. 

About ELSAG North America
ELSAG North America is a Finmeccanica company, a global leader in Defense and Security solutions.  ELSAG North America was created to focus on the development and North American distribution of proprietary license plate recognition technology which ELSAG originally developed for Italy’s law enforcement agencies.  ELSAG North America is headquartered in Brewster, NY with US manufacturing in Greensboro, NC.  For more information about the company and its License Plate Recognition technology, visit www.elsagnorthamerica.com or call President and CEO Mark Windover at 866-9MPH900 (967-4900).

About Finmeccanica, SpA


Based in Rome, Finmeccanica S.p.A. is Italy’s largest aerospace and defense group, a key player in European industry, and has a growing position in North America.

Finmeccanica S.p.A. is listed on the Milan stock exchange. The Italian Ministry of the Economy owns 32.3% of its shares and the remainder is held by foreign and Italian investors. To maintain and develop its technological leadership position, Finmeccanica invests over 14% of its revenues in Research and Development. 
Finmeccanica has a leading capability both as platform maker and system integrator: network-centric solutions, satellite services, homeland security and EEZ management systems, pilots training, air traffic management and control, C4ISR, naval combat management systems.  
Finmeccanica provides systems and products for government agencies and commercial customers and its core competency are widely recognized by the market.  The company’s key objective is to strengthen its aerospace and defense portfolio in order to develop and exploit industrial, technological and commercial opportunities.