Vallejo Cites Ferry Terrorism to Get $30,000 Grant for License Plate Readers
The Vallejo Police Department cited ferry terrorism as part of its $30,000 grant application for license plate readers, calling the ferry “a viable threat for a terrorist act.”
According to the grant application, the “Grant Funds will be utilized to establish an ALPR [Automated License Plate Reader] camera system for eastbound and westbound traffic lanes approaching the Ferry Terminal, Ferry Terminal Parking Structure and waterfront.”
The Vallejo Police Department already has a network of license plate readers in locations around the city. Two of Vallejo’s ALPRs can be found on a pole on the west side of Glen Cove Road, at the Vallejo city line just south of Interstate 780. Two ALPRs are located in front of 4325 Sonoma Boulevard and two ALPRs are located on southbound Fairgrounds Drive at Gateway Drive. The six stationary ALPRs were installed in 2015, along with ALPRs on five police vehicles.
According to information provided to the California State Auditor, 102 of the police department’s 150 employees have access to license plate reader data. The Vallejo Police Department’s ALPRs send the collected images and data to the Northern California Regional Intelligence Center (NCRIC), which retains them for one year and makes it available to dozens of other agencies. In the six months from July 2019 to December 2019, Vallejo sent more than 5 million images collected from its ALPRs to NCRIC.
Vallejo Detective Lieutenant Fabian Rodriguez was listed as the applicant for the grant for the project, which was expected to begin on November 1, 2020 and completed by May 1, 2021.
The regional benefit was described as:
ALPR Cameras to Strengthen Information Sharing and Collaboration of data from Vallejo Ferry Terminal. The Ferry Terminal provides daily commuter transportation from Solano County to San Francisco, with commuters from Napa utilizing the ferry for daily transportation to the Bay Area.
The terrorism nexus was described as:
With thousands of commuters utilizing the Vallejo Ferry system each day to travel to San Francisco, the Ferry is a viable threat for a terrorist act. Installing an ALPR camera system in the area of the Ferry Terminal will assist with identifying potentially wanted terrorist suspect vehicles.
On March 12, 2020, the Bay Area UASI Approval Authority approved a $30,000 grant to the Vallejo Police Department for its “Vallejo PD ALPR” project. When we requested a copy of the grant application, the Vallejo Police Department responded that it has “no responsive documents.” The grant application was disclosed pursuant to a public records request to the Bay Area UASI.
It’s just another way for the VPD to violate our rights to privacy. I was pulled over with my 3 kids in the car and my 66 year old mother because supposedly my current registration sticker was stolen. I had just received the car a couple weeks prior and it was like that when i got the car. I was under the impression the sticker was assigned to the car and the registration was current. When I asked the officer why he pulled me over, what had I done he said license plate reader said my registration was out of date and so he knew my sticker was stolen. Okay but had that system not invaded my privacy and ran my plates without probable cause there was no way for the officer to know that. I am not a terrorist, I’m a legal US born citizen. I’m not on any terrorist red flag list and neither is my vehicle’s license plates so where are we as Vallejo residents going to draw the line and say enough is enough. This police force thinks they are above our constitutional rights and they have no rules or limits they have to police the Vallejo citizens within. The cop ended up pulling the sticker off my car (which again he is not allowed to do, he was suppose to have me do that) and letting go with a warning. Suppose my kids and mom wasn’t with me……. I believe he would have impounded my car which I just obtained a few weeks prior.. Because little did I know it was more than 6 months out of registration. Thank God I’m not on probation or parole anymore because if so I’m sure the officer would have cuffed me and searched myself and my car infront of my kids all because I was lied to and done foul when I purchased a car with a stolen registration sticker. If the system is to e used for fighting terrorism then homeland security need to man those cameras not VPD. VPD will use the to violate our rights just as they did mine