Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office Implements Palmprint ID Technology

System to enhance recognition capabilities for largest county in Florida.

by / October 22, 2003
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- The Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office needed to improve its ID network to solve crimes more quickly. With a population of more than 1.2 million residents and an area of more than 2,380 square miles, Palm Beach County is the largest of Florida's 67 counties.

The sheriff's office has implemented a palmprint identification system that will include AFIS/ palmprint identification and electronic fingerprint scanning technologies. The system will allow county officials to quickly and accurately identify suspects and help them solve crimes more effectively.

The office processes more than 4,000 cases that involve latent prints per year. Over 40 percent of these cases involve palmprints.

"The deployment of this system will increase the number of people that we are able to identify and the number of cases that we are able to solve," said Palm Beach County Sheriff Edward W. Bieluch. "The new technology will streamline our operations and allow us to be more productive. Being more productive means that we are able to protect the public more effectively, which is one of the most important things we do."

Omnitrak is Motorola's fingerprint and palmprint system that features high matching accuracy as well as continuous automated operation. With the new system, Palm Beach County will be able to seamlessly capture, store, search and match palmprints the same way that they are currently doing with fingerprints. The software enables fast and accurate suspect identification, saving agencies valuable time and resources.

Palm Beach County is planning to upgrade to the full Omnitrak system in phase II of the project in 2004.

"It just makes sense," said Mark McDonald, ID/ Latent Manager of the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office. "When you consider that approximately one third of all crime scenes in the U.S. involve latent palmprints, we are able to identify an immediate return on our investment. I think we can expect to see a growing number of law enforcement agencies throughout the country implementing palmprint systems for their jurisdictions."
Miriam Jones Chief Copy Editor
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