CopDots promise to help trace stolen goods

by: Craig Lucie Updated:

ATLANTA - They are tiny disks, the size of a grain of salt called CopDots. It's new crime-fighting technology tool that more than 70 Georgia police agencies are exploring, including the Atlanta Police Department.

CopDots are DNA for your property, so if anything is stolen, like your TV, police can get it back to you.

Channel 2's Craig Lucie talked to CopDots President Shawn Andreas via Skype.

"That's the actual CopDots pen and inside the pen there is a clear adhesive. It allows law enforcement to scan property," explained Andreas while he held the pen.

Each pen has more than 3,000 micro-identity dots. They are discs with a unique pin number. Once officers scan the CopDots, your unique pin number will pop up in a global register database so police can call you if thieves tried to sell your watch, tools or electronics.

Shyeecha Vaughn, who has been a crime victim on multiple occasions, said she wouldn't think twice about buying the $30 CopDots pen.

"I think it will be very helpful for the community to track down people when they are stealing or items are misplaced," said Vaughn.

Atlanta police told Lucie that they are analyzing the technology to weigh the pros and cons. They added that they are in the "looking" stage.

Andreas told Lucie that he's met with Dunwoody, Alpharetta and Marietta police too to show them the technology.
"We have probably about 70 agencies in the state of Georgia that are interested," said Andreas.

He said they are interested because it will help convict thieves that may otherwise walk free.

"They (police) make an arrest and find property which they know is stolen, but they can't find a victim to solve case and convict and individual," explained Andreas.

Pawn shops can also use CopDots to check to see if an item is stolen as soon as it's brought in. Atlanta police plan on getting community feedback about CopDots at a Buckhead neighborhood meeting on Thursday.