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New equipment aids DPS in vehicle searches

By Gheni_Platenburg
Jan. 25, 2011 at 10:01 p.m.
Updated Jan. 24, 2011 at 7:25 p.m.

Victoria County District Attorney Steve Tyler presents DPS trooper Thomas Arriaga with a new $8,000 Optim FreedomView LED Fiberscope during a news conference on Jan. 21.  The Fiberscope is an inspection tool that will assist troopers with locating contraband.

State troopers will be able to conduct vehicle searches more easily now that they have a new piece of equipment to help them.

The Victoria County District Attorney's Office purchased the $8,000 inspection tool called Optim FreedomView LED Fiberscope for the Department of Public Safety.

Money from the forfeiture funds paid for the equipment.

"This will help make a lot of good cases and make our community safer," said Victoria County District Attorney Steve Tyler. "It's money well spent."

The 36-inch Fiberscope will assist troopers with seeing behind closed doors as well as inside gas tanks and other areas where contraband is usually hidden.

DPS received the equipment on Dec. 21.

"It's a really good tool in fighting the war against drugs," said DPS Trooper and Public Information Officer Gerald Bryant. "You don't have to completely take equipment apart on a vehicle to search different parts of the vehicle."

In addition to cutting down on major disassemblies, Bryant said the new equipment will help troopers cut down the time it takes to search a vehicle for contraband as well as increasing the safety level of inspecting vehicles on the side of the road.

The Fiberscope purchase rounded out The District Attorney's Office's prior commitment to purchase four items off of DPS' wish list.

The other previously purchased items included sending a trooper to a highly regarded drug interdiction conference; three sets of hand tools, which will aid troopers in vehicle disassembly; and a plotting device, which will aid troopers in reconstructing accident scenes.

"They now have all the equipment they need as well as the training to follow through with their interdiction," said Tyler.

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