Severe T-Storm Warning for Dodge County until 7:45pm
Severe Thunderstorm Warning for Jefferson Co. until 8:15pm
Severe Thunderstorm Warning for portions of 4 counties in SE Wisconsin until 7:15pm
Tornado Watch for most of SE Wisconsin until 10pm
Complete coverage of Summerfest 2017, the festival’s 50th edition

Milwaukee police demonstrate StarChase technology, an alternative to high-speed pursuits

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

MILWAUKEE -- The Milwaukee Police Department on Tuesday afternoon, April 19th demonstrated its latest technology that can be deployed as an alternative to high-speed pursuits in the city -- called StarChase. Police talked about the success they've seen with this technology during its pilot phase.

As FOX6 News first showed you in August 2015, StarChase is a system that includes a pneumatically-powered GPS tag to be deployed from an equipped squad car and attached to a target vehicle. Once the target vehicle is tagged, the GPS movements can be monitored by officers and dispatchers alike. Officials say that allows for a safer, more focused, more effective apprehension of a suspect who flees.

The pilot program began in December 2015.

StarChase

StarChase

StarChase technology is not in every Milwaukee Police Department squad car, but police would like to see most patrol officers trained on it.

"What this allows us to do is virtually continue to pursue," Terrence Gordon, inspector with the Milwaukee Police Department said.

When a pursuit stops, the tracking of the suspect vehicle does not. The GPS projectile deployed from the squad sticks to the back of a suspect's vehicle.

StarChase GPS projectile

StarChase GPS projectile

"It makes it a lot easier to find these cars that do flee from us because we are able to track them without the high-speed pursuits," Kim Lastrilla said.

When police tried to demonstrate how the technology works on Tuesday afternoon, it did not go as planned. The GPS projectile would not stick to the vehicle. Police said weather and proximity may have played a role.

Police said since December 2015, StarChase has been used 55 times, with about a 50 percent success rate.

"It helps us locate the vehicle, even if we don`t have the suspects in custody," Lastrilla said.

StarChase GPS projectile deployed

StarChase GPS projectile deployed

In late January 2016, police used the technology to track two teenagers accused in a carjacking. They were stopped at 35th and Capitol and arrested.

Police said this is just one example of the success they want to see continue.

"I thought it would be a very good tool to add to their Batman belts," Gordon said.

Pursuit ends near 35th and Capitol

Pursuit ends near 35th and Capitol

When this technology was first presented by Milwaukee police, they said it would cost $5,000 to equip each squad.

On Tuesday, they didn't have exact numbers.

There's no timetable as to when the StarChase program may be expanded.

StarChase technology

StarChase technology

CLICK HERE to learn more about the StarChase Pursuit Management Technology units, and how they work.

18 comments

  • David Dough

    Ok, the only question is, if the suspect ends of fleeing, how do you locate the person (s) to rightfully charge them for committing the crime? How much does this “technology” cost the tax payers? I guess at least you will get the car back or locate where the car is potentially at a chop shop or something where the thieves are at and maybe uncover more stolen property? Try it out right? These are just my random thoughts.

    • Michael Neils

      Too bad it wouldn’t make the thieves poop their pants when star attached. Just look for the poop laden people running amuck-got your thieves. I think the ankle monitor bracelets should do this as well-roam too far Poooooooop!

    • Opinion8d

      Just went to the StarChaser site to see it in action…..not very impressed. It looks like the tag could easily be removed. What would stop them from taking off and when out of sight, just stop and pull off the tracker?? How about some good old-fashioned punishment to deter behavior??

  • A yooper

    They just ditch the car anyhow. Stupid democrat idea. more $$ wasted once again. Maybe something like 500,000 volt laser to disable car and occupants.

    • 💩 MAYOR MCCHEESE 💩

      SOON YOU WILL ALL BE RIDING MY TROLLEY BECAUSE ALL CARS WILL BE BANNED AND THE ONLY WAY TO GET AROUND WILL BE BY BARRETTS TROLLEY OF LOVE OR ELSE YOU COULD GET A SEGWAY BUT IT DOES NOT RESEMBLE HALF AN ERECT PEENIS SO YOU WILL NOT GET CHUBBY ON YOUR SEGWAY UNLESS YOU CATCH A COOL BREEZE UP THE LEFT SIDE OF YOUR SHORTS.

  • The truth hurts

    Liberal…. Your name says it all. Bet you don’t live in Milwaukee. I really shouldn’t even respond to you because you are a troll. Just lock yourself in your parents’ basement and put your tin foil hat on. You’ll be safe! Switch to puzzles or video games instead of adult discussions.

  • A yooper

    I knew Barrett was an idiot. I respected Flynn. Flynn Must have had this stupidity jammed down his throat. He can’t be that stupid. What a complete waste of $$ A rocket launcher into fleeing car would be nice. Some scrap metal to pick up in the morning. Crows get something to eat. All good.

    • Jon from Milwaukee

      I would respect Flynn if he would stand up to Barrett’s garbage even once. Instead he’s Barrett’s puppet. He’s also gone to Washington and spouted Barrett’s political BS, so I don’t respect either of them. I respect the officers who are actually out on the streets every day trying to do their job.

  • yo

    Can’t the cops hang out the window and shoot the tires like the old days. Tell you what, just let the sheriff handle enforcement, he’ll apply the proper methods to disable the perps.

  • Neil

    This is right out of the movies. Yea, this may help locate the stolen car after the thieves abandon it. Better than a pursuit, which usually ends up in the stolen car being destroyed. But really, the chance is good that the thieves will remove the unit and the cops will find it on the side of the road. I think this is one of those cases where we are using too much technology.

Comments are closed.