JPD offers new tech to neighborhoods

Published: Mar. 9, 2022 at 6:50 AM CST
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JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - Cracking down on crime, by tracking who comes and goes.

Jonesboro Police want neighborhoods to consider footing the bill to put new license plate readers across town.

The license plate readers would set Home Owner Associations and neighborhood watch groups back at least $2,500 a year and this is the less expensive option.

The idea started after the Jonesboro Police Department was asked about sky cameras being placed in neighborhoods.

“I wouldn’t feel safer,” said Shamal Carter, a Jonesboro resident.

Shamal Carter has worked in the community for years.

“I feel like that’s a way to single people out,” he said.

According to data from JPD, over 5,000 crimes against property like burglary, arson, and theft happened in 2021.

The department said this new technology can be purchased by anyone, not just HOA’s and neighborhood watch groups.

Flock Safety would be the provider for the readers.

On its website, the company advertises the system reduces up to 70% of crime in the community.

To address privacy concerns, JPD said the readers would focus on intersections to see who is coming in and out of neighborhoods and the cameras would face public streets.

But some still feel this is reaching too far.

“I agree with the sky cops because you can solve crimes with sky cops. With the license plate readers, it is a general, I can single you out,” said Carter.

This is just a start. JPD said it is going to see how interest is in the idea and they may bring in more options for communities organizations.

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