I conducted an interview at WES 2010 with Gayle Guilford, Director of Management Information Systems for the Baltimore Police. She and her team have been working hard piloting and implementing the use of BlackBerry smartphones as an integral part of a beat cop’s tool belt.
PocketCop by InterAct can access the police database for outstanding warrants, mugshots, and info. The system also uses GPS asset tracking so that dispatchers can get a bird’s eye view of police coverage, and dispatch backup much quicker and from closer positioned units than ever before. The camera can also be used to gather evidence instead of calling a police photographer in from the station.
They call the whole system Side Partner. Through a successful 80-person trail and a subsequent grant, over 2000 officers at the Baltimore Police Department have been enjoying the benefits of getting out of their squad cars, and back onto the streets.
The audio from the interview is above. We touch on a lot of topics so it’s worth a listen no matter what side of the law you’re on. It’s amazing how many engineering hurdles Gayle’s team had to jump over in order for the BlackBerry to make it onto the police belt.