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Lexington Council backs plan to expand license-reading cameras

Stu Johnson

The Lexington City Council is moving forward with an expansion of Flock license plate reading cameras. After an extensive debate, a vote to remove the item from consideration was easily defeated. The proposal, backed by Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton, calls for adding 75 cameras along streets throughout the community. Council Member Preston Worley said he’s been supportive of expansion all along.

“So while we have a police shortage in this community, are we going to continue to turn around and say every technology that helps them, we need to wait longer, we need to wait longer. We can’t wait longer. If at any point any of these questions we have come the answers, that we’re unsatisfied with this, we take the cameras off the streets,” said Worley.

More than one Council member asked that more time pass before establishing additional cameras. Council Member Liz Sheehan asked if extra time would allow for comparative crime data.

Vice Mayor Steve Kay favored allowing for more time to evaluate the crime-solving technology.

“What we told the public is this would be a one-year pilot project, and at the end of that time, we would review the data and we would make some comparisons with what we got with the Flock cameras from what we got in maybe the previous year,” said Kay.

Mayor Gorton and Police Chief Lawrence Weathers both cited examples of how cameras led to location of missing persons, recovery of stolen vehicles, and more than 400 charges filed. A final vote on Flock camera expansion is pending.

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Stu has been reporting for WEKU for more than 30 years.
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