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ELSAG LPR cameras help catch accused killer

Highway cameras help catch accused killer


ABC News 4- Charleston, SC

May 11, 2011


GEORGETOWN, S.C. (WCIV) -- Highway cameras [LPR cameras manufactured by ELSAG North America] helped catch a suspected killer in Georgetown Tuesday.


Georgetown police say the suspect was driving into town, heading north on Highway 17 when cameras captured a picture of his license plate. The picture of that license plate led directly to the arrest.


The cameras are set up along the highway, and they snap thousands of license plate photos everyday. They've been in place since 2007 and have gone largely unnoticed, but their value is essential to police.


"It's not a first time we caught a murder suspect," says Georgetown Police Captain, Nelson Brown.


Late Tuesday morning police nabbed a man wanted for murder, 54 year-old William Constance, from Lexington. He's accused of killing his estranged wife, 52 year-old Margaret Constance. Police say he stabbed her 25 times on Sunday


We're told Constance was driving his wife's car when the license pate recognition cameras captured his image.


"If another agency has the need to locate a vehicle they'll enter the tag in NCIC, whether it's a stolen vehicle, amber alert or a suspected person they're looking for," Brown says.


Lexington County Sheriff's deputies had entered the plate number in a national crime database. The system recognized it, sent an alert to dispatch in Georgetown and a short time later officers made the arrest. It's an example of the precision, police say, these cameras offer.


"It says it can get them up to 100 miles per hour, it reads the tag and that tag is confirmed," says Brown.


There are a total of four cameras in the Georgetown area, two are on Highway 17 near the Black River Bridge. The other two are on Highway 17, in Maryville.


Constance has been returned to Lexington County where he's being formally charged with murder. 

The license plate cameras are paid for by a grant from the Department of Homeland Security. 


LPR Technology | MPH-900 | License Plate Reader