May 15, 2014
Fingerprints at Ward Council (excerpts)
Ink rollers at Ward police department became museum pieces Monday as City Council members approved digital fingerprinting capability.
Ward mayor Art Brooke and aldermen Bill Moon, Lee Schoonover, Jeff Shaver, Gary Matheny, Charles Gastineau and Don Howard attended the meeting.
Ward Chief of Police Steve Benton told aldermen of the LS1100 Digital Livescan Fingerprinting system. The system would cost $13,995, with financing over 60 months for monthly payments of $279.30, with no penalty for early payoff.
But, Benton added, he does not think it will take the full 60 months to pay it off.
“This is technology that is out there. We think it is a good thing.,” Brooke said. “But, it’s above my buying power is the reason it is before the council,” Brooke said.
Benton said the system would be plug-and-play using Internet capability already in place in the department.
Once a fingerprint is “captured” by the scanner, it is transmitted to the State Police, “It gives an almost instantaneous return. In a worse-case scenario, maybe an hour to hear back,” Benton said.
In a letter to the council members, Benton said results of ink fingerprints sent to the state Crime Lab could take several months to be seen.
It would do away with the problem of unacceptable ink fingerprints that are rejected by the State Police, Benton said. “I’ve never had a concealed-carry card that passed,” he said.
Although the fingerprint unit it too large to be considered portable, it can be used outside the office for special events, Benton said.
The system can be used for fingerprinting children if parents want it done, Benton said. Fingerprint cards are printed and surrendered to the parents without the scan being stored or transmitted. “It’s just for parents to keep,” he said.
The service would also be available for individuals who need fingerprints for employment, Benton said. Unacceptable inked fingerprints cause delays for those individuals when they must be re-done.
Shaver made the motion to approve the purchase. “Sounds like a no-brainer to me. Very beneficial,” he said.
The motion was approved without opposition.