New York City police officers soon will be armed with two new crime-fighting tools: a digital tablet and a mobile app, reports the Wall Street Journal. In the next three months, the NYPD will roll out a pilot program equipping officers with a computer tablet outfitted with an application that can access a trove of police databases. The app connects to the NYPD’s Domain Awareness System, which includes everything from arrest records to the text of 911 calls in real-time.
“Just about everything I can access in my office, they will be able to access in their patrol car, on their walking beat, as they’re responding to a crime,” Commissioner William Bratton told the New York City Police Foundation, which raises money for NYPD initiatives. He called the project “the future of the New York City Police Department.” Giving police speedier access to the databases is a “significant officer-safety issue,” he said. Officers responding to a 911 call may get information about outstanding warrants and gun permits for people associated with the address. Such data would provide “an overview of the location that they are responding to,” Bratton said. Officers now primarily receive information they could view on the app–if they get it at all–over police radio.