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Lancaster's eye in the sky helps police arrest murder suspect

High-tech aerial surveillance system attached to a small airplane help officers keep an eye on apartment building as officers move into place.

August 30, 2012|By Ann M. Simmons, Los Angeles Times
  • Lancaster's new Law Enforcement Aerial Platform System uses technology attached to a piloted single-engine Cessna to give deputies a bird's-eye view of what is happening on the ground.
Lancaster's new Law Enforcement Aerial Platform System uses technology… (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles…)

Officials in Lancaster are crediting the city's new aerial surveillance system with aiding in the capture of a suspect wanted in connection with a double slaying.

The incident unfolded Tuesday when Los Angeles Police Department officers were conducting undercover surveillance of an apartment complex on the east side of Lancaster, looking for a man wanted in connection with two homicides, according to a statement from the Los Angeles County sheriff's station in Lancaster.

Shortly before 3 p.m., the officers determined that their suspect was inside one of the apartments and called on deputies to help take him into custody. Sheriff's officials dispatched Lancaster's new Law Enforcement Aerial Platform System, which uses technology attached to a piloted single-engine Cessna to give deputies a bird's-eye view of what is happening on the ground.

Within a few seconds, a deputy at the station had an aerial view of the apartment complex, sheriff's officials said. He kept watch on the complex while units were positioned around the building to prevent the suspect's escape and LAPD officers moved in. The aerial surveillance "allowed the LAPD officers to safely take the suspect into custody without incident," officials said.

An LAPD spokeswoman said she had no information about the incident.

ann.simmons@latimes.com

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