Local US police force to use mobile fingerprint scanners
04 July 2017 15:28 GMT

Local law enforcement officers in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania  have started using new mobile fingerprint identification scanners to help identify people who cannot provide ID during traffic stops.

District Attorney David Freed made the announcement alongside members of the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association (PCPA) and the Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) at the Upper Allen Township Police Department, reported local media Ship NC.

The police force is the first in Pennsylvania to use the technology.

Fingerprint data is used if someone doesn’t have an ID or if police have reason to believe the person is suspicious or dangerous. The devices usually return results is less than three minutes.

“With the heightened concerns that we have in this country about terrorism, we are as likely to encounter a terrorist in traffic stop by a local police officer than almost anywhere else,” Freed said, noted ABC27.

“Oftentimes, on traffic stops or when encountering a potentially dangerous person, every minute counts,” said Cpl. Adam Reed, spokesperson for Pennsylvania State Police.

The devices cost less than $2,000, said the officials, who also clarified that no information comes up if someone doesn’t have a warrant or a criminal history of a misdemeanor or higher, and fingerprints are immediately deleted.

“Unfortunately, in today’s technology, any of you can go on the Internet, and you can buy false ID, get your picture on it with all kinds of false identifying information. Sadly, it’s very popular on a lot of your college communities, but also it’s very popular with the criminal element there,” Upper Allen Township Police Chief James Adams said.