License plate scanners making big impact

WHITEHALL, Ohio (WCMH) — It’s not the newest of technology–license plate readers are key tools for law enforcement.

But in Whitehall, they went a step further this year and contracted to get data from private organizations and their plate readers.

It led to a hit all the way in New York, a car, a suspect, and a step closer to answer in a triple murder.

“These are complex investigations. It’s not ‘a+b=c,’ goes in a lot of directions very quickly,” Sgt. John Grebb of Whitehall Police said.

The program scans license plates beyond just the scope of what law enforcement teams can do.

“If I get a hit I will hear an audible tone, and a red color locks onto the car it’s hit on,” officer Brian Smith said.

The Ohio State Highway Patrol uses them too.

There are 11 on the Ohio Turnpike, and another dozen on cruisers thoughout the state.

Sgt. Vincent Shirey tells NBC4 it allows troopers to spend more time watching for impaired drivers or other things on the road, with the technology doing some work too.

“Once we capture an image, and nothing comes back, the data isn’t stored. It’s deleted from the system, we don’t keep information if anything we run comes back clean,” Shirey said.

According the Whitehall Division of Police, 19-year-old Daveron Cortez Minnis was arrested in New York and charged with three counts of murder.

Police said when he was taken into custody he was driving a 2014 Dodge Charger that is the alleged getaway car used in the homicide.

According to police, more than one suspect was involved in the crime and it remains under investigation. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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