Omaha is providing a commendable example of how technology can help local law enforcement protect the public. Over the past three years, the Omaha Police Department has returned more than $1.2 million in stolen goods by using technology to identify the items.
The city, under a policy proposed by City Councilman Pete Festersen, requires pawnshops and salvage yards to log fingerprints, photos and IDs from people selling used items. As a result, the city has been able to connect more than 1,300 stolen items to their rightful owners. The items’ average value is $923: anything from jewelry to sporting goods, electronics and bikes.
The City Council will be well justified in renewing the $56,500 annual software agreement to retain this powerful partnership between technology and law enforcement.