The Douglas County Sheriff’s Department is the first law enforcement agency in the state to use new technology that will help identify missing children and adults. Sheriff Tim Dunning says they are using digital photography to capture an image of the iris.
“With this technology, we simply take a digital photo of the human eye. Particularly the iris. The camera takes a high resolution digital photograph of both eyes at the same time.”
Sheriff dunning says the iris biometric technology utilizes a high-tech camera that can instantly identify anyone who has information already stored.
“After the photo is taken, in a matter of seconds, the digital image along with the photo and emergency contact information is encrypted and stored in a secure national registry.”
Sheriff Dunning says deputies will carry the equipment with them on patrol.
“When one of our deputies encounters a person who may be an missing child or adult, we can use this equipment to take a picture of their eyes and in less than 15 seconds will match and determine the true identity.”
Sheriff Dunning says this new system will be put to use the same way fingerprint identification programs are currently run at fairs, festivals and expos. He says this will also be very useful in identifying criminals and those already behind bars.
“The technology also can be used in our jail to positively identify inmates from the time of arrest through their release. It is an exceptional tool to make certain we don’t release the wrong individual because of a mistake in identification.”
The technology will also be very helpful in identifying sex offenders as well. The Sheriff’s Department will also be getting a program that will allow deputies to access the database from their I-phones.