CANTON Digital fingerprinting has arrived at the village Police department, slashing the amount of time it takes for officers to receive a potential match.
Old inked prints could be from 10 days to two weeks for responses, Police Chief Victor N. Rycroft said. Generally a response on the prints with the new system is reduced to less than one hour.
Communication is enhanced between police and the U.S. Department of Criminal Justice, he said.
If there is a match, at some point DCJS will send us back a message and say Hes been arrested before, and we know before hes even left the station, Chief Rycroft said.
The Cross Match print scanner was one of several technological improvements awarded through a grant funded by the state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services.
Also included in the bundle were a new computer and monitor linked to the scanner, a mug shot camera, a signature pad and associated software. The total value, Chief Rycroft estimated, is approximately $30,000.
Until the grant allowed the upgrade, the traditional ink-dipped, finger-rolling method to obtain prints was used when a subject was brought to the police station.
Now, officers line the digit up on the scanner until it matches the outline of a finger displayed on the computer screen, and the print is taken.
Using the old method, Chief Rycroft said, ink could settle into ridges on construction workers damaged fingers, for example, clouding potential prints and essentially hitting the reset button.
You know youre going to get a good picture every time. Everybodys really liking it, he said. It will make our work a whole lot easier.
Though the system is new to the Canton police officers, the St. Lawrence and Jefferson county sheriffs departments have had similar printing technology for several years.
Chief Rycroft also touted the capabilities of the new camera included in the package. It automatically zooms and focuses, capturing the mug shot in front of a mounted charcoal background used to standardize images between different police stations.
While the officers were given the new equipment by way of a grant, the department will have to maintain a service agreement to keep the equipment functioning after one year.