In June 2022, Kettering installed the Flock Safety Automatic License Plate Readers. The Flock system consists of 10 cameras placed throughout the city that capture images of license plates as vehicles pass in front of them. These images are stored for 30 days and then purged from the system.
Overall, Kettering’s Flock cameras read an average of 2 million license plates each month. In addition, Kettering receives an average of 300 Hot List hits per month from Flock cameras. Hot List hits are generated by national databases to alert officers to a stolen vehicle, wanted person, or missing person. Kettering Officers can also create their own hot list entries to aid in investigations.
The Flock system has aided the police department in many ways, including to help solve crimes in Kettering. Thefts, including post office box thefts, burglaries, criminal damaging, assaults and arson cases have been assisted by images from the cameras.
Between June 2022 and December 2022, Flock hits resulted in 29 arrests and assisted in 19 cases. They also aided in the recovery of 15 stolen vehicles and 5 stolen license plates. While not every Flock hit leads to an arrest, images can help determine a suspect’s direction of travel after a crime was committed or help identify a suspect vehicle.
Kettering’s Flock cameras are part of a large and growing network of cameras in the Dayton area. Kettering PD has access to images from Flock cameras located in surrounding jurisdictions, allowing for more information to be shared among agencies.