NewsSarasota, Manatee County


License plate readers installed in Holmes Beach

Posted at 2:24 PM, Apr 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-25 06:41:47-04

HOLMES BEACH, Fla. — Holmes Beach residents will now notice five newly installed license plate readers throughout the island, and officers say it's nothing to worry about.

"The only time an officer is going to get an alert on you is if your car is stolen or you are wanted,” said Chief William Tokajer.

MANATEE COUNTY NEWS | The latest headlines from Manatee County

Other municipalities, including Longboat Key, are already using the technology. Investigators said the technology helped them solve a 2017 double homicide.

"Everywhere you drive now you are going by a license plate reader. When you do pay by plate that's a reader, when you go over the Skyway there's a reader,” said Tokajer.

Some residents believe the move is an invasion of privacy.

“It’s about privacy and how much of our privacy are we giving up all the time, every little bit takes a little away form us,” said resident Bill Shuman.

Tokajer said the readers have already been effective. They arrested a car thief within the first week of the readers being installed.

“It’s a good investigative tool for law enforcement to do followup on major crimes,” said Tokajer.