LPR Data Solves Ohio Triple Murder, in N.Y.C

By Brian Shockley, Vigilant Solutions  |   Feb 25, 2016
A common plate query on the LEARN platform. Photo Vigilant Solutions.

Whitehall Police Department used investigative software and commercial license plate reader (LPR) data to locate a vehicle associated with a triple homicide on August 19, resulting in an arrest of Daveron Minnis on August 25 by the New York City Police Department.

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Sgt. John Grebbs, of Whitehall PD, explains: “The bodies of Kim Alston, Dontai Rheubottom, and Charles Fischer were found inside the Shaker Square Apartments on Olde Bailey Way near South Hamilton Road on Wednesday, August 19. Through some investigation, it was determined that a white Dodge Charger was used as the getaway vehicle and Mr. Minnis was identified as one of the suspects.”

Vigilant copies the 100 million license plate scans made each month by asset recovery vehicles nationwide to its law enforcement data center in Virginia, making the data available to law enforcement for investigations and also for matching against various law enforcement hotlists.

“We entered the license plate of the Dodge Charger into LEARN in order to generate alerts should any vehicle in Vigilant’s commercial LPR data network scan the plate. On Monday the 24, we received an alert from LEARN that the suspect vehicle had been seen in Jamaica, N.Y., at 1:15 p.m. by an asset recovery vehicle using Vigilant’s license plate reader equipment. Using the pictures provided, we confirmed that it was the correct vehicle. I immediately notified the NYPD and made them aware of the vehicle’s location, but it was not there when they went to the scene.”

Grebbs continues, “On the very next day, August 25, we received another alert that the license plate had been scanned again by one of these commercial vehicles at 11:43 am. It was in very close proximity to the scan from the prior day. I once again notified the NYPD with this information, and they were able to locate the vehicle in the area reported using a mobile license plate reader. Mr. Minnis was taken into custody and is being extradited back to Ohio where he will face three counts of homicide. The LPR data from Vigilant definitely assisted in this case, and saved countless hours and agency resources in locating our suspect.”