Freeport rolls out 'Operation Safe Streets'

Freeport Village rolled out a high-tech safety system today as part of its "Operation Safe Streets."

The program involves surveillance equipment that is capable of scanning 2,000 license plates per minute.

The system will allow village police officers to identify stolen vehicles, cars with expired registration or no insurance and cars associated with Amber or Silver alerts. An alarm will then be triggered at the command center, which will relay the information to officers out in the field.

Police can also use the technology to monitor traffic patterns for suspicious activity.

Officials say more than 3.5 million license plates have been scanned since mid-October in Freeport Village.

A total of 300 cars have been impounded for suspended or revoked registrations, and six people have been arrested in stolen vehicles.

Freeport Village says the new system costs about $600,000. It was paid for by bonds and a grant from Nassau County.

According to officials, there are 27 license plate-reading devices that have been set up along the perimeter of Freeport Village.

Jason Starr, with the New York Civil Liberties Union, says too much information is being collected, putting people's privacy at risk. He says collecting and potentially storing information, even briefly, is an intrusion.

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