LAS VEGAS--Motorola announced during IWCE 2005 that it has landed a contract with the Wilmington (N.C.) Police Department to deploy its Mobile Video Enforcer system, and said it would introduce a new capability that would enable officers in the field to wirelessly transmit video footage captured by the system.

The system--which includes an in-vehicle digital video recorder and digital camera, as well as a video management system that resides within the department--offers 24-hour recording, a 60 GB storage capacity that enables 24-hour recording and MPEG2 compression, “the highest available,” according to Steve Lisiewicz, a Motorola product manager. In addition, an auto-zoom function enables the camera to capture automobile license plates “even in the dark,” said Motorola spokesman Steve Gorecki.

The DVR can be removed from the vehicle and inserted in the video management system to archive footage, which also can be burned onto a DVD whose quality meets the standards of the legal system, Lisiewicz said.

The Wilmington police beta-tested the system in 75 vehicles over 18 months beginning in 2003. It will be deployed in 88 police cruisers at a cost of $4900 per vehicle, which Lisiewicz called a “promo price.” Motorola didn’t divulge the cost of the back-end management system, but Lisiewicz said it would be tiered, ranging from a 10-vehicle system up to systems that can accommodate as many as 100 vehicles. Motorola also is offering a “starter system” designed for departments with fewer than 10 cars, he said.

Motorola plans to add an infrared digital camera to the system in August 2005 that will be mounted on the outside of the vehicle and which will focus strictly on vehicle license plates. The camera will continuously shoot license plates that come into its view and then wirelessly send queries back to a state database to determine whether any wants or warrants exist for that vehicle. Officers will be alerted in the event of a hit. The camera will be able to capture license plates even when the vehicles are moving at speeds up to about 100 miles per hour, which will aid officers in high-speed chases, Lisiewicz said.

Motorola expects to introduce by the end of the first quarter 2006 the ability to upload video footage to the video management system located at the department via a 4.9 GHz mesh network. “This will eliminate the need for removing the DVR from the vehicle,” Lisiewicz said.