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Published on January 28th, 2014 | by Millennium Magazine Staff

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First of its Kind in SC Technology Introduced by Sheriff Lott Leads to 239 Suspect Identifications

Sheriff Leon Lott stated since April of 2013 he has deployed 51 Blue Check Devices (fingerprint readers) which have greatly enhanced the Department’s ability to capture criminals and identify suspects. Sheriff Leon Lott stated that from June 29, 2013 through December 31, 2013, and out of 230 deputy queries, use of the device resulted in the following:

·72 identifications from our local database
·163 identifications from the state database
·4 identifications from the Federal Bureau of Investigation database the resulted in arrests

The Sheriff stated that using the Blue Check Devices (fingerprint readers) has assisted in positively identifying 239 individuals in the first year of its use. Sheriff Leon Lott added that countless arrests have been made taking criminals off our streets; saving precious time and resources.

The first of its kind in South Carolina , the Blue Check devices are a tool that assists Deputies in confirming identities and checking for local warrants on suspicious persons or those arrested using their fingerprint. Sheriff Leon Lott states that time and again suspicious persons will be stopped by deputies and lie about their identity or about having outstanding warrants. With the use of the “read only” Blue Check devices the Deputies can quickly confirm their identity and if there are local warrants. Sheriff Leon Lott added that the devices do not save the person’s fingerprint but checks the person’s fingerprint against those booked in to the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center . The Blue Check device is assigned to patrol deputies and specialty units who assist in suppressing crime. The devices are linked to the Deputy’s patrol car’s mobile data terminal. Sheriff Leon Lott stated that within minutes the identity can be confirmed not only increasing the deputies’ efficiency but also making our communities safer.

Sheriff Leon Lott stated that there are countless examples of arrests using the devices; ranging from shoplifting and trespassing, drugs, criminal domestic violence, trespassing and fugitives from justice. For example the Sheriff announced that on November 20, 2013 Kevin Jackson, was arrested for burglary and identified as a result of the Blue Check device, which alerted deputies that he was also wanted in Georgia for parole violation;

·10/23/2013 – Richland County Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to meet with Columbia Police Department to assist in identifying a suspect; the suspect was identified as Donovan Whilby who was wanted by the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

·12/26/2013 – Deputies stopped a suspicious vehicle; the driver had her driver’s license but the passenger said he didn’t have identification on him. The Deputy used the fingerprint reader and identified him as Daniel Hammond, wanted by West Columbia Police Department. Hammond was turned over to West Columbia Police Department.

·12/30/2013 – Deputies were maintaining a perimeter for a K-9 track near Broad River and Rushmore. Deputies notified officers of a suspicious vehicle leaving the area. As a result there was a short chase and the driver fled on foot. The suspect was located and gave the name Craig Chisholm. Deputies used the fingerprint reader and identified the subject as Johnnie Lee Walker, wanted from Orangeburg County . Walker was transported to the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center on our charges and a detainer was placed by Orangeburg County .

Sheriff Leon Lott continues to search for innovative ways to fight crime – pursuing new technology and programs that will effectively help in identifying those that would victimize our citizens. To that end Sheriff Leon Lott has purchased, using forfeiture funds, the Blue Check Devices. The Sheriff added that by not using taxpayer’s money to deploy new and innovative technology is extremely important. Being a good steward of our County finances is a very high priority; while fighting crime and making our neighborhoods safer is the highest.

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