VENTURA (CBSLA.com) — The Ventura County Sheriff’s Department has a crime-fighting app that gives deputies information faster.
“The iCop allows officers in the field to search individuals by name, demographics, gang affiliations,” Rodney Lanthier, who works in the county’s Information Technology Services Department, said.
Lanthier, along with Capt. Chris Lathrop, came up with the app idea, which makes officers more efficient and safer on the job, especially when they approach suspects or residents.
“We developed this concept of getting the information we have in our data banks out to the officers quickly through an application on the iPhone and it kinda grew from there,” Lathrop said.
CBS2’s Amy Johnson reports that the department purchased a license from Apple and within one year, their concept was up and running.
Every field officer has access to the iCop. About a dozen other agencies have come to Ventura County looking into developing similar systems.
“To the best of our knowledge, this is a very unique application. We’re one of the first agencies to develop an application like this,” Lanthier said.
The app is only available to officers and can link them to some seven million records. It offers much more information than the computers in their patrol cars.
“I can pull out my iPhone, and I can get every bit of information that we have electronically stored, 12 to 13 years of data,” Lathrop said. “This application touches every database we got. So when I look up a person’s history, I get information about any crime reports that involve them, any arrest reports, any incident reports, pawn slips, scars, marks and tattoos.”
The information on the app can be in the officers’ hands in about 20 seconds. They can also input information, as well as photos, which is available to other law enforcement almost immediately.
Eventually, a similar system could link every department throughout the state.