Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department Announces At APCO Plans to Equip Fleet With Wireless Data Technology

BEDMINSTER, NJ — Bell Atlantic NYNEX Mobile and the Charlotte- Mecklenburg, NC, Police Department will announce today at the APCO Convention plans to equip the local police fleet with new wireless data technology called Cellular Digital Packet Data (CDPD).

Laptop computers using Bell Atlantic NYNEX Mobile AirBridge® CDPD service will be installed in more than 460 Charlotte-Mecklenburg police vehicles, including patrol cars, the mobile command post, SWAT vans, crime scene vans, patrol boats and canine unit vehicles. The service will provide officers in the field with nearly instantaneous wireless access to information before they approach a vehicle, house, or suspect, allowing them to make critical decisions that will enhance their own safety as well as that of the community.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg will be the second largest public safety application of CDPD technology in the nation. The system will give officers access to local, state and national law enforcement databases to retrieve complete motor vehicle records, criminal warrants, police reports, GIS, and other information in seconds.

"We believe in the value of technology in police work. When officers graduate from the police academy, they should be given a badge, a gun, a radio and a laptop," said Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Dennis Nowicki. "This new technology will directly benefit local residents as well by enabling our officers to spend less time doing paperwork and more time in the community."

Jim Akerhielm, Bell Atlantic NYNEX Mobile vice president for the Southeast Region, said his company is pleased to be working with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg police and is looking forward to working with other departments interested in the benefits of wireless data technology.

"Our wireless data service, known as AirBridge Packet service, uses our existing cellular network. This capability provides police departments with a much more reliable, affordable and versatile alternative to traditional two-way radios," Akerhielm said. "There's no need to build more radio towers or be concerned with network maintenance or upgrades. Bell Atlantic NYNEX Mobile takes full responsibility for maintaining and upgrading the system."

The software that allows officers to connect to national, state, and federal databases, police information systems, the National Crime Information Computer (NCIC), and the NC Division of Motor Vehicles is being provided by Cerulean Technology, Inc., of Marlborough, MA.

In addition to saving time, the mobile computer systems will increase the security of police department communications. Messages are "encrypted" or scrambled by both the software and the CDPD network to prevent unauthorized reception.

About Bell Atlantic NYNEX Mobile

Bell Atlantic NYNEX Mobile is the largest wireless service provider on the East Coast and the second largest in the United States. The company owns and operates the most extensive network in the east, covering 111,000 square miles, and the largest chain of wireless retail outlets offering a full range of wireless personal communications services, including voice, data and paging. Based in Bedminster, NJ, Bell Atlantic NYNEX Mobile has 4.9 million customers and 6,500 employees in the Northeast, mid-Atlantic, Southeast, and through a separate subsidiary, in the Southwest. The company was formed in July, 1995 by combining the cellular operations of Bell Atlantic Mobile and NYNEX Mobile. For more information, visit our home page at

About Cerulean

Founded in 1992, privately held Cerulean Technology, Inc. is a rapidly-growing developer of innovative, client/server software applications for public and private wireless networks. The company's PacketCluster Patrol software is the market leader in wireless mobile information software for law enforcement and public safety, and has been chosen by law enforcement agencies in 35 states. PacketCluster Patrol won the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association's 1996 APPY award for best end-user software. For more information, visit Cerulean's Web site at