Cheshire Police gets smarter with mobile fingerprint technology Date published: 9th October 2015 12.11pm

Anyone thinking of telling a police officer their name is Donald Duck and that they live at Graceland will find they are wasting their breath in Cheshire.

After a trial period of using mobile fingerprint devices last year, the machines have now been acquired by Cheshire Constabulary, thanks to Cheshire Police and Crime Commissioner John Dwyer’s commitment to improving policing through technology. This piece of kit means that anyone stop searched and suspected of being economical with the truth can have their finger prints scanned at the scene rather than being arrested and taken to custody; which takes officers off the streets and uses up time when they could be protecting the community.

The devices can capture images of fingerprints at the roadside and then send them for checking against the National Fingerprint Database.  A result will notify whether a match is found and give the identity of any match. It can also be used on people who are unconscious or deceased and their identity is unknown, in the case of an unconscious person, it can also alert the officer to any medical conditions so the right treatment can be given swiftly.

Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire John Dwyer said: “We have had some excellent results with people giving false details at the road-side having their true identity revealed.

“This excellent piece of kit saves time for officers taken up with the unnecessary procedure of arresting someone whose identity is questionable, meaning they are out there in the community rather than waiting in custody for a prisoner to be processed and ID confirmed.

“It also helps the community by identifying people quickly so that their families can be informed or the correct medical treatment administered in time.

“At the start of the financial year I approved a budget, which enabled us to invest money in technology and transform the current estate to enable officers to spend more time on the front line. This new kit is part of our commitment to making policing efficient, cost effective and very much 21st century.”