Facial Recognition Technology Nabs Alleged Felon

Viisage, a leading provider of advanced technology identity solutions, announced that the Viisage-powered mobile identity solution launched by the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office earlier this summer is proving to be an effective tool for officers in the field, most recently aiding in the identification and capture of a wanted fugitive.

On Sept. 11, PCSO deputies responding to a disturbance call found an uncooperative suspect who provided what turned out to be a false name and date of birth, which made it impossible for deputies to identify the suspect through traditional measures. Subsequently, the PCSO deputies used the Viisage mobile identity solution, powered by the Company's leading face recognition technology, to quickly identify the 27-year-old female, who was wanted on two felony warrants. Upon being confronted with the positive photo match, the suspect confessed to her true identity and was subsequently arrested and booked at the Pinellas County Jail.

False identification and alias information can become a barrier to making a positive identification and arrests. With the Viisage mobile identity solution, we now have immediate access to our database from the field," said Lt. James Main, Pinellas County Sheriff's Office. "The positive identification of this fugitive is proof of the power of this system in helping with law enforcement and protecting the public."

The Viisage mobile identity solution allows deputies to capture an individual's image with a digital camera, place the camera into a docking station in the patrol car and, through wireless communication to the PCSO's existing image database, conduct a face recognition search to determine if the individual has been previously arrested. Through the use of this technology, which compares the new image against existing images to find matches, deputies are able to access the PCSO and partner network databases and know immediately if the individual they are questioning has an existing criminal record, including previous offenses. Law enforcement has found that database mining, based on image alone, can remove the barriers formerly encountered when uncooperative individuals produced false or no identification.

The PCSO identity solution is also deployed in the Pinellas Courthouse, detention facility, jail visitation center and the Clearwater International Airport. The system throughout Pinellas has been extremely successful in identifying people in these locations by matching their images to those in the PCSO database. On a daily basis as part of their booking process, the PCSO finds matches between the live image captured in booking and images on file in its electronic database.

"Identification of people is critical in law enforcement, high security areas and just about every transaction people conduct daily. Viisage's identity solutions are focused on helping our customers answer the critical question "is this person who he or she claims to be'," said Bernard Bailey, president and CEO of Viisage. "The identification of this fugitive using Viisage's identity solution is excellent proof of the usefulness and success of this technology in answering that question and helping our customers with more efficient means of conducting their business."