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License Plate Reader Aids Bronxville Police

BRONXVILLE, N.Y. – Three days before Thanksgiving, a Connecticut man was one of many people driving a car through Bronxville. This particular driver did not run a stop sign or go through a red light. In fact, he was driving within the speed limit in a lawful manor.Only this driver was not lawful at all. This driver, Benjamin Goldmann, 25, of Ridgefield, CT., was driving a 2008 Suburu that had been reported stolen from New Haven, CT.

The Bronxville officer who was on the road at the time would have never known Goldmann was driving a stolen car if not for the state-of-the-art license plate reader discreetly mounted to the police car.

Bronxville Police Sgt. Steve Gallo said that the department has had the LPR for the last two years.

“I would say we have caught more than 100 cars due to the LPR.” Gallo said.

The LPR scans every vehicle that drives past the police car. “There is no way to avoid it,” Gallo explained.  “The LPR still catches the license plate even if the driver speeds up or gets behind another car.”

In the police car, officers have a computer screen with 10 different possible categories the plate could fall into, such as a stolen car, a car registered to a sex offender, a person who owes parking tickets in the village or a person whose plate does not have any issues.

The computer alerts the officer, and offers information about the car’s owner, such as previous criminal record.

“Officers now know who they may be approaching when they walk over to a car,” Gallo said. “They know something about who could be behind the wheel.”

Goldmann was arrested November 21 at 5:40 pm. He was charged with possession of stolen property, a Class D felony. The Subaru was impounded and towed to police headquarters for further inspection.

Goldmann was remanded to Westchester County Jail in lieu of $25,000 bail. He is due back in Bronxville Village Court on November 30.

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