Victoria police starts state-wide deployment of mobile devices
Victoria Police has started handing out new mobile devices to provide Police Officers faster access to the information they need. Almost 60 iPad minis and iPhones have been handed out to Protective Services Officers (PSOs) and Transit Police Officers based in the Wyndham area. Minister for Police, Ms. Lisa Neville, joined Victoria Police members at North Melbourne train station to meet with police and see first-hand how transit police are using the devices across the public transport network to easily access information to detect and report about criminal activity.
By the end of 2019, around 8,500 devices will be present in the field, with additional devices to be deployed to support new recruits and organisational needs. More than 10,000 devices will be rolled out across the state over the next five years.
This is part of the State Government’s investment of more than AU$227 million to modernise and upgrade Victoria Police technology, with AU$81.2 million delivered for the Mobile Technology Project.
The new devices are expected to improve responsiveness, accountability and efficiency by ensuring information is captured and shared quickly by Victoria Police officers. The capability of the devices will evolve over time to include capturing evidence, identity checks and reporting crime.
The investment in police technology aims to create a more modern and efficient police force and to ensure officers have a greater presence in the community by spending more time proactively policing and less time being station-bound. Other technology initiatives include the roll out of Automatic Number Plate Recognition across the Highway Patrol fleet, a new intelligence system and body-worn cameras.
Recently, legislation was passed in Parliament to give PSOs new powers to target anti-social behaviour and crime by ensuring they can respond to incidents in and around the train station they are patrolling. The new laws will give PSOs a range of additional powers including the power to arrest a person who has breached their parole, conduct searches for illicit drugs, and request names and addresses from people who witness a crime.
Ms. Neville, said, “These iPads and iPhones will equip our officers with the right resources and technology they need to access information and protect the community. This will ensure our PSOs have even faster access to the best information and intelligence available, especially when they’re out patrolling a train platform and are away from a computer.”