NewsLocal News


LCSO announces new technology to identify inmates using their eyes

Posted at 11:59 PM, Dec 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-15 09:54:16-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — In just 15 seconds Leon County Sheriff's Office can now identify an inmate using biometric technology.

"Five years ago we had the highest crime rate in the state of Florida."

That is the reason LCSO is enforcing the inmate recognition identification system — also known as IRIS.

"Which means I'm not providing anybody with information about me and I've just been arrested by Tallahassee PD."

It identifies current and former inmates.

This system makes matches in seconds, no matter where the person was originally arrested.

Chief operating officer at BI2 technologies John Leonard said this is the holy grail of human identity.

"Whether someone has actually provided the proper name or date of birth or tried to allude detection The IRIS recognition truly is the ability for us to identify somebody accurately and honestly."

This system cost about $20,000 but Leon County was awarded a grant for the funding.

They have been using the IRIS for a few months and Assistant Sheriff Steve Harrelson said it helps when booking inmates.

"While we have an inmate who may come in and not be cooperative in telling us who they are or trying to seal their identity by doing something with their fingerprints or with their facial features with the IRIS they cant defeat that."

In just 15 seconds inmates can be identified. The IRIS is another tool to protect people in Leon County.

"We now know who they are so where somebody might have bonded out on a charge and by the time we got them properly identified with fingerprints somebody might have gotten away."

Leon County Sheriffs Department has been using IRIS since May.

The IRIS technology is currently in use in seven counties in Florida, that includes Wakulla, Leon, Hendry, Bradford, Levi, Flagler, and Franklin.

Flagler and Franklin Counties will go live with the technology at the end of the month.