Excelsior Springs Approves License Plate Reader Technology


The Excelsior Springs City Council has recently approved a proposal to implement a License Plate Recognition (LPR) camera system throughout the city. This decision, backed by a professional services agreement with Flock Safety, marks a significant step in enhancing local law enforcement capabilities.

The initiative, spearheaded by Excelsior Springs Police Chief Gregory Dull, aims to leverage the nexus between motor vehicles and criminal activity. Chief Dull emphasized the value of license plates as objective evidence, crucial for acquiring actionable leads in various criminal investigations.

These LPR cameras, strategically placed throughout the city, will assist in real-time identification and interception of stolen or wanted suspect vehicles. “This technology acts as extra sets of eyes, particularly valuable in time-sensitive cases like Amber Alerts, homicides, robberies, and kidnappings,” Chief Dull stated.

The Excelsior Springs Police Department conducted thorough evaluations, testing systems from three different providers. Flock Safety emerged as the most cost-effective and suitable option, aligning with both the current and future needs of the department.

The first-year implementation cost, totaling $54,000, will be financed through the Public Safety Sales Tax (PSST) Fund. Additionally, the department secured a $24,000 Missouri Department of Public Safety 2024 Local Violent Crime Prevention Grant and anticipates further funding from a 2023 Local Law Enforcement Block Grant.

The move to adopt LPR technology follows similar successful implementations in other cities. Many communities that have experience with Flock Safety cameras have seen significant crime reduction potential, a result the Excelsior Springs Police Department hopes to replicate.

Despite the clear benefits, the initiative has raised some privacy concerns from citizens and council members. To address these, the department assures that the LPR cameras will not collect personal information, focusing solely on vehicle data. The system is designed without facial recognition capabilities and will not issue citations for traffic violations.

As the Excelsior Springs community prepares for the deployment of this technology, the Police Department remains committed to ensuring that the LPR system is utilized responsibly, respecting both the efficacy of law enforcement and the privacy of its citizens.

Read more about Flock Inc. and LPRs at the Flock website.


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