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LSU considering license plate cameras

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BATON ROUGE - With thousands of cars traveling through LSU, student government wants the university to install more license plate recognition cameras around campus.

The systems would take a picture of every car's license plate when entering and leaving campus. Student Government President Clay Tufts says more cameras would add another blanket of safety for students.

"You'll be able to monitor who's coming on and off campus," he said. "LSU's campus is big with a lot of entrances, and having these license plate readers at these entrances will be able to flag vehicles that are suspect to crimes."

The LSU Police Department already has license plate readers on two police cars and another system in a fixed location on campus. The images go to a national database and are kept along with the plate number for up to six months. No personal information is kept on record, according to LSU Police Capt. Cory Lalonde.

"The system will alert officers if there's any kind of outstanding warrant or if that vehicle has been listed as a stolen vehicle or if that plate has been listed as stolen. In those types of situations it will alert officers," said Lalonde.

Lalonde says officers could also use the images to track down suspects if an incident were to happen on campus.

"You know I think it would be fair to say that you would identify more individuals in more situations that would give officers alerts that they could further investigate and if necessary take the action they need to," he said.

Between 30 and 50 people are arrested each year, usually for outstanding warrants, using just the three license readers that LSU Police currently have, according to Lalonde.

"I think it's overall going to impact students from a campus safety perspective, and they'll feel more welcoming and more able to move around campus safely," said Tufts.

Student government says it has not discussed how to pay for the license plate recognition systems.



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