Baltimore City, MD Police Department, using Federal Stimulus money, is issuing Blackberry devices to every patrol officer. Since I am a Blackberry owner I found this article quite intriguing. Definitely a 21st Century concept that just may be the beginning to a trend nationwide. There are positives reflected in this story, as well as negatives.
By Ben Nuckols
September 4, 2009 7:21AM
BlackBerry devices, which are made by Research in Motion, are likely to take the place of computers for officers who don’t have them in their cars, and laptops may not be replaced after they become obsolete. The devices are also equipped with global positioning software that will allow commanders to pinpoint exactly where officers are.
The devices allow officers to run warrants, check vehicle registrations, and pull up criminal histories and suspect photos. Officers who use them can be more efficient and spend more time outside of their cars…
Early reviews for the devices have been positive. Officers using Pocket Cops made twice as many arrests over a 3-month period than those equipped with radios or laptops, according to statistics provided by the department. They also hauled in more offenders on outstanding warrants.
The devices are also equipped with global positioning software that will allow commanders to pinpoint exactly where officers are. That technology concerns police union leaders, who suspect that officers might face undue scrutiny.