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StarChase aimed at making Byron police chases safer | Community Spirit

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StarChase aimed at making Byron police chases safer

What seems to be futuristic technology, is now being used by the Byron Police Department. It's called StarChase.

It's a three-part system that fires a GPS tracker that connects to a speeding car. The launcher sends a projectile that has an embedded GPS tracker onto a speeding car. That helps police track the car without having to speeding behind it.

Which means less property damage, injury, or worse. Death.

"What this technology does basically is calms the whole situation," said David Respess, a trainer and manager for StarChase.

He says if the car can be tracked by GPS. Officers can back away from the car, which can cool down both the officers and the suspect.

Each unit costs around $5.000, however Byron police won theirs in a raffle. Police Chief Wesley Cannon says it will be safer for everybody.

"I've been injured twice in a police chase myself over my twenty year career. Citizens...have been injured in chases. That's the biggest thing we want to prevent," he said.

Respess says the projectile is non-lethal, won't cause any injury and the suspect won't even know it landed on their cars.

He said, "Taxpayers don't want to pay the bills of these expensive law suits. So they're on board with getting this technology and not just to cut down on the amount of pay outs and claims and lawsuits."

Chief Cannon says StarChase isn't a violation of the suspect's rights. He said an officer will use it only if they have probable cause for arrest, such as when the suspect has already tried to flee.

He said, "You got to start with making smart decisions first, and I believe this is a smart decision to make."

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