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License readers aid Metro police

Michael Bolden

Metro Transit Police are using license plate readers mounted on police vehicles to identify stolen vehicles, car thieves and other suspected or wanted criminals, according to a statement from the agency.

Metro police have eight of the car readers in the force now, which "are helping to reduce crime in Metro parking facilities," Metro said. Officers have used them to verify vehicle registrations, help locate chop shops, and track crime trends, officials said. The reader system processes license plate numbers through local and national databases, and officers can use it to verify vehicle registrations.

Metro acquired the readers in 2009 as part of a grant from the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, the statement said.

-- Ann Scott Tyson

By Michael Bolden  | August 30, 2010; 3:05 PM ET
Categories:  Ann Scott Tyson, Maryland, Metro, Northern Virginia  
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Pure revenue ploy. Secure the metro trains and buses.

Big Brother coming closer and closer...

Posted by: yell53 | August 30, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Are chop shops being run out of Metro's parking facilities? Seems that there are other ways to detect such an operation without buying expensive new equipment with money that Metro should be using to buy safety switches for tracks, air conditioners for trains, working motors for train doors, clocks for stations, and fare charts and signage for Metro stations!

Posted by: tlc20011 | August 30, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

metro police are not worried about the animals loose in the bowels of dc, they have traffic duty instead!

Posted by: jiji1 | August 30, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Are chop shops being run out of Metro's parking facilities? How exactly will this fancy and expensive new equipment put a stop to such operations? Seems to me, that Metro could/would/should use ever available dollar to upgrade it's safety switches, repair non-working door motors and HVAC on trains, and put up some signage in stations so customers know where they are and how much to pay for a dang ride!! Of course, the elevator and escalator repair and rehab program needs every red cent Metro can find. A few working clocks in stations might be nice also, since the new fare scheme is so heavily dependent on what time of day a passenger's trip begins. The clock at Arlington Courthouse station has not worked in well over two weeks.

Posted by: tlc20011 | August 30, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

They already have license plate readers on street sweepers and parking enforcement vehicles so what's the big deal with having them on police cars?

Posted by: Jimof1913 | August 30, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Jimof1913 - Why stop there. They should finger print everyone entering metro -- they may have a warrant out for their arrest -- or maybe are 1 day late for their taxes.

Posted by: yell53 | August 30, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

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