Vigilant Solutions announces today that Travis County Sheriff’s Office used Vigilant Solutions’ LEARN software, enhanced with additional license plate recognition (LPR) data from Vigilant, to assist in the identification and location of a vehicle used in a drive-by shooting.
Detective Alan Howard of Travis County Major Crimes Unit, who responded to the scene, explains, “I reported to the scene of the shooting, and through interviews determined that a young man was visiting his girlfriend at her home. A vehicle pulled up to the residence, and another young man exited the vehicle. The two young men got into a confrontation, but the suspect returned to his vehicle and the vehicle left the scene. A short time later, the vehicle drove by the residence, shots were fired from the vehicle, and the boyfriend and a bystander were injured. A witness to the shooting captured some video using a cell phone, and from that we were able to get a partial license plate and vehicle description. I sent this information to Detective Mark Wester for assistance in identifying the vehicle.”
“I received the information from Detective Howard and decided to run the partial plate against historical license plate reader data that we had just gotten access to from Vigilant Solutions,” adds Detective Mark Wester. “I logged into our agency’s LEARN account, entered the partial license plate number, and received numerous matches to the partial license plate. One of these vehicles matched the description given to us by the witnesses, so we used this license plate to continue our investigation in hopes of identifying potential suspects. Using the full license plate number, and looking at Vigilant’s historical LPR data dating back several years, we were able to determine a probable location for the suspect vehicle.”
Detective Howard concludes, “Using the information that Detective Wester was able to pull from the Vigilant system, we were able to locate the suspect vehicle. This, in combination with other information, has allowed us to make four arrests in connection with the shooting. We are thankful that this historical license plate reader data was available to assist us in this investigation.”
“We applaud Travis County, one of our newest customers, for their use of our technology and our data to help identify and locate these suspects,” states Shawn Smith, President and Founder of Vigilant Solutions. “With legislation pending in roughly half of the States to limit the amount of time that this historical LPR data may be retained, we are hopeful that stories like this will illustrate that this information is enabling law enforcement to more efficiently conduct major crimes investigations – protecting us all, preventing crime, and saving lives.”