‘Flock’ surveillance system rolls out in South Bend with promising results

Published: Nov. 3, 2022 at 6:01 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - Flock Safety has helped South Bend Police Department officers and investigators to solve at least 187 cases.

“It’s shown a great success. The officers, not only patrol, but investigative wise use it every day,” said Lieutenant Kyle Dombrowski with South Bend PD.

The new crime prevention tool can read license plate numbers and has helped law enforcement to track vehicles involved in crime in real time.

“So, what it does is it takes a picture of a vehicle, but it also scans that license plate and runs it through the criminal database,” Dombrowski said.

If a vehicle or license plate was stolen or involved in a crime, police have been able to simply type the license plate number into the database and track the last place it was seen by Flock Safety.

“Well, it’s one of those things that we’ve never had before. Like identifying, it’s just, you know, you may have a witness statement, or maybe there’s some surveillance video, but this is just another tool to add to that puzzle of you know, identifying crime, locating evidence,” Dombrowski said.

According SBPD, since it was put up around the city, Flock Safety has assisted in solving 83 motor vehicle thefts, 20 aggravated assaults with a firearm, 40 theft investigations, 9 homicide investigations, 11 wanted parties, 10 robbery investigations, and 14 “others.”

“By utilizing this technology, it gives the officers another tool in their toolbox to be effective, whether it’s for prevention methods or for enforcement, to make our community safer,” said Dombrowski.

Police told 16 News Now, that this new tool has been all about building better trust and communication with the community by keeping them safer as well as seeing where the department can be most effective with their resources and manpower.

“To better serve our community and either recovering somebody’s property or maybe finding that right evidence you know, to solve a crime, or helping a loved one find somebody lost or endangered,” Dombrowski said.

According to SBPD, a Real-Time Crime Center is in the works that would incorporate the work done by crime analysts and Flock Safety.