The cameras will be placed throughout the city in high-traffic areas with additional cameras in large retail areas, such as Stone Hill Town Center and near Walmart, says PPD. The cameras are expected to be operational within a few weeks.
The Pflugerville Police Department is set to begin using 28 Flock Safety Cameras throughout Pflugerville to assist investigations and improve safety. (Pflugerville Police Department)
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The cameras were approved by the Pflugerville City Council on April 26 and the funding is through a Department of Justice Project Safe Neighborhood Grant.
Flock Safety Cameras contain a license plate reader and take pictures of vehicles as they drive by that can then be accessed by Pflugerville Police officers up to 30 days after they are captured. These cameras will also automatically scan for stolen vehicles and wanted persons, says PPD.
To ensure responsible use, PPD has developed a policy based on other agencies' best practices, which includes:
- A 30-day limit on data storage and access restrictions
- Employee training
- Strict restrictions surrounding when cameras can be accessed
- Quarterly audits of officers’ usage by leadership
Pflugerville police say this technology has been successfully implemented by surrounding agencies, who have seen increased recovery of stolen vehicles and a reduction in overall crime.
Flock will also provide a transparency portal that shows what the system is set up to detect, the department’s policy on its use, number of cameras, number of vehicles detected, data shared with other law enforcement agencies and how many searches officers have conducted using the system, says PPD. When live, that portal will be available here.