anywhere. It's used to review incidents.

The setup cost approximately $100,000, but the airport spent an additional $80,000 on construction of a physical structure in the checkpoint area to replace the glass barriers. The glass inhibited the behavior recognition system because the camera responded to reflections from the glass. Short said the setup results in a savings in checkpoint personnel of between $100,000 and $120,000 a year.

"It's a narrow passageway where we put everybody through past the checkpoint," Short said. "There's a pre-alarm area so that if people are just mistakenly walking the wrong way, we've got a camera that will sense the wrong-way motion and scare them out of their pants with a screaming, 'Stop! Halt! Back up.' If they proceed past the pre-alarm area, they go into the full alarm area, where there's another camera doing behavior recognition."

If a full audible alarm goes off, airport security personnel and local police respond to the call. The system also stores any alerts, allowing investigators to go back and review incidents or submit video as evidence as was the case in following a 2006 airport incident.

"We had an incident last year where an individual ran through the checkpoint to go back to an aircraft," Short said. "He set off the pre-alarm, and it didn't faze him. Then he fully alarmed the system, became belligerent when law enforcement showed up, and he was actually incarcerated for violating federal airport security regulations.

"The key was being able to bring this piece of evidence, this video evidence, to the judge and say, 'This is what he did.' Without that, we wouldn't have had a case."

Jim McKay, Justice and Public Safety Editor  |  Justice and Public Safety Editor