The Role of Vehicle Centric Investigations in Solving Crimes

Vehicle Centric Investigations

Experts estimate there are 115 million cars on American roads each day. These vehicles do more than move people between locations. They are also a valuable tool in many criminal investigations.

Vehicle-centric investigations are becoming more commonplace, and they have been the key to solving many crimes. They can be used to identify suspects or provide critical information in an investigation. A person might assume traffic cameras and cameras in other locations are only used for hit-and-run accidents, but that isn’t the case.

Law enforcement officers may look at cameras in parking garages or on streets to identify a robber or find a kidnapper. They look for the vehicles these individuals are driving and use the smallest details to find the suspect. AutoVu Cloudrunner by Genetec is an excellent example of a vehicle-centric investigation that collects and analyzes vehicle data helpful to law enforcement officers when they are investigating a crime. How is this system used?

How Vehicles Are Used in Crimes

Criminals might use vehicles when committing robberies, moving drugs, or kidnapping individuals. They use vehicles to get away quickly and move people or goods without detection. Law enforcement officers recognize this and now focus their investigations on finding the vehicles used in crimes and tracking their movements.

Vehicle Forensics

Vehicle forensics is a specialized branch of science today. It looks at vehicles and their components to learn more about how to identify specific vehicles. They examine evidence like paint chips and skid marks to try to identify the vehicle involved in the crime. They can also figure out the trajectory and other information that may help officers solve the crime.

Tracking a Vehicle’s Movements

Vehicles are designed to move people between places, and criminals take advantage of this. However, the same vehicles can be tracked, which is of benefit to law enforcement officers. They use automatic license plate readers, GPS tracking, and other tools to find criminals and surveil them until they can be captured. As many automatic license plate readers today are solar-powered, they help catch criminals while keeping costs down and can be relocated as needed. This makes it easier for law enforcement agencies to do their jobs.

Solid Evidence

Law enforcement officers can use surveillance footage together with eyewitness accounts to put a suspect at the scene of a crime. They can back up this information with GPS data to show the criminal was on the scene when the act was committed. This solidifies the prosecution’s case when the matter goes before the court. Once a criminal sees the proof the officers have that they are responsible for a crime, they may choose to plead guilty or accept a plea bargain, saving the state and its citizens money.

Eliminating Jurisdictional Boundaries

Jurisdictions find it easier to work together when vehicle-centric investigation tools are used. The tools allow them to share information and work together to catch criminals. When doing so, they can combine their resources and expertise to bring cases to a close sooner.

Law-enforcement officers benefit greatly from the tools used in vehicle-centric investigations. Criminals rely on vehicles to carry out their nefarious activities. However, these same vehicles can lead to their capture, thanks to the tools available today. The tools are used to ensure victims receive justice and criminals are taken off the streets. With the help of vehicle-centric investigation systems, the world is a safer place for all.