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License Plate Recognition System Question

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  • License Plate Recognition System Question

    Hello everyone, I saw something strange on Northbound I-35 W and Washington Ave. at about 4pm today. I saw a car driving that had four cameras for a License Plate Recognition system mounted to the trunk. This was not a law enforcement vehicle like a Ford Interceptor Sedan or Dodge Charger, but a white (and visibly rusted on the doors and wheelwells) four door sedan like a Oldsmobile Alero or similar. The driver was driving like an idiot, drifting from lane to lane, barely paying attention to the road, and when I had the opportunity to pass him, he had his head turned to the right looking at a laptop.

    The vehicle wasn't marked in anyway, not even private parking enforcement or security, just a white car.

    My question are these things legal to own by a private citizen? I did write down the plate number so I can report it, but to whom? State Patrol?

  • #2
    Yes, civilians can and do own them. Probably repo guys. I don't know how it all works, but I would imagine they don't have any access to registration info, but they can in theory create their own databases of plates of cars they are looking for. Sales reps from LPR companies have their own cars with mounts also.

    I'm not sure about any other current applications, but I'm sure their use will increase (bounty hunters, private process servers, etc).

    Very few things these days the cops can own but the public can't.

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    • #3
      Very likely a repo guy or similar. My dad used to do car repos....many of the bigger banks won't even contract with a repo company if they don't have LPRs. The database is obviously not DVS, but a privately created one of cars up for repo. In theory it would allow a repo company to get a hit and repo a car that they weren't even looking for, but had a repo order out on it.

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      • #4
        License Plate Recognition System Question

        Interesting stuff.

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        • #5
          Ok, thanks guys. It was just weird to see a plain white, rusting car with 4 LPMS cameras....I know that they are being looked at by a couple of security departments with internal databases for parking enforcement of employee vehicles on company property, but this was a first where I haven't seen it on a L.E. vehicle.

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          • #6
            that would take all the fun out of targeting and racial profiling that cops do.....right? ............sorry, I guess all the crap in the news lately has caused some heightened sarcasm in me. =o/

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