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St. Pete police try new cannon tracking device

5:41 PM, Oct 13, 2013   |    comments
A StarChase projectile is launched from a squad car in the Tropicana Field parking lot where St. Petersburg police unveiled the new StarChase Tracking Device technology, which launches a GPS projectile from a squad car onto a fleeing car, allowing it to be tracked. LUKE JOHNSON/Tampa Tribune
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St. Petersburg's police department is trying something new to help track down criminals by using something you might see in a James Bond movie. 

Selected police cruisers will be equipped with small cannons in their front grills that shoot sticky GPS cannonballs. 

If police are engaged in a high speed chase, a GPS tracker with sticking ability can be launched from the cannons and and attached to a suspects car, allowing the officer to stop pursuit. 

St. Petersburg police unveiled the StarChase system at Tropicana Field Friday. 

The cannons are being used as part of a experimental program.

The GPS cannonballs run about $250 each, said St. Petersburg police spokesman Mike Puetz. 

After the system is tested for six months, administrators will decide whether to install the system in more police vehicles.

The Tampa Bay Tribune

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