WILSON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — The Wilson County Commission is preparing to vote on a measure that would add 21 license plate recognition (LPR) cameras across state routes, paid for by grant funds.
Currently, police in Lebanon and Mt. Juliet utilize the technology. According to the Mt. Juliet Police Department’s website, so far its Guardian Shield program has made 281 “successful interceptions” using LPRs.
“With these cameras, we feel like it’s going to provide another level of safety for the citizens of Wilson County,” Wilson County Mayor Randall Hutto said.
Hutto said that if approved, LPR footage would be shared amongst law enforcement agencies in the county.
“That will allow them to work together as they track [a vehicle] leaving from one municipality to another, or out in the county, or in this case, coming from surrounding counties that touch Wilson County. So we will see exactly what travels into our county as well,” Hutto said.
Specifically, Hutto said cameras will read license plate tags, looking for vehicles reported stolen, connected to missing persons, and vehicles flagged by other police agencies.
“It’s nothing for traffic tickets or those type of things, or invasion of privacy either. It is only when something is flagged that a tag will come up,” Hutto said.
The budget committee has approved $187,000 over the next two years to fund the new cameras, which will come with a violent crime grant initiative.
“The dollars, of course, are federal and state dollars, which our people also pay into. We always look to get our share of those, so that is another opportunity. This is where that money will be coming from, so another win we feel like for the taxpayers of Wilson County,” Hutto said.
The Wilson County Commission will vote on the 21 new LPRs next Monday, Oct. 16. Sheriff Robert Bryan said it’s not known when cameras would go up. However, the location for the cameras have already been selected and mapped out.