Contact +1-847-428-7171
  • Customer Service |

Precision in the Haystack by Will Martin

OTTO’s Lynq PRO offers clear-cut positioning and communication during law enforcement search and recovery missions

Snow blanketed the San Bernardino Mountains surrounding Big Bear Lake. The February cold and 7,000-foot elevation had seen to that. Resting about 100 miles east of Los Angeles, the mountains’ crisp air was a welcome escape from the maddening pace and smog of the nation’s second-largest city.

On this day in 2013, however, the mountains’ dense pine forests served as a canopy for a criminal in hiding, a disgraced police officer bent on murderous revenge. Christopher Dorner, dismissed from the LAPD five years earlier, was at the center of a massive search mission that involved nearly every Southern California law enforcement agency. Having already killed several officers and their family members, the operation was saturated by a sense of life-or-death urgency.

“A spree killer is not like a serial killer. A spree killer is someone who… just tries to kill as many people as he can because he knows the inevitable is going to happen - he’s going to be in a police shootout or something,” said hosts of the “Manhunt on the Mountain” podcast in 2020. “That’s why the manhunt was so intense.”

Costly Chaos
At a basic level, the search mission was a success. On Feb. 12, officers burned down the cabin that housed Dorner, bringing a fiery end to his life and killing spree. But the effort also exposed the striking communication and logistical challenges presented by interagency search and recovery missions, especially those in the law enforcement community.

“Local deputies lacked direct radio contact with the LAPD team, which created the possibility of confusion and chaos,” the Los Angeles Times reported at the time. “A result of bad cellphone and radio coverage in the mountains.”

The chaos surrounding the Dorner search is not unique to largescale, aggressive manhunts, either. Whether searching for a missing person or critical evidence, agencies often struggle to integrate with one another in a timely, efficient manner, talking past one another on incompatible networks. The delays can prove costly.

“Determining the precise, real-time location of personnel and evidence in the field, communicating clearly between agencies – making that happen is a real nightmare for leadership in terms of cost and mission success,” said Mike Griffith, Sales Manager at OTTO Engineering, a leader in law enforcement and tactical communication equipment manufacturing. “By inserting the Lynq PRO into the equation, we’re offering a solution that eliminates overlapping communication and competing technologies. It streamlines coordination across agencies, at a fraction of the cost.”

Simplifying the Search
By deploying a Lynq PRO kit, command and control elements can distribute and sync devices across a search party, rapidly establishing a self-sustaining, interagency network that isn’t dependent on satellite towers or conflicting agency networks. Once synced, the devices continually transmit the position of party members and empower messaging across the team.

“Instead of spending invaluable hours game-planning logistics or trying to connect on disparate networks, agencies can field a Lynq PRO kit and quickly put everyone on the same page,” said Griffith. “It replaces several tools and augments others, boiling them down onto a graphical user interface small enough to fit in your hand.”

Operating on a long-range, low-power encrypted network, Lynq PRO stretches the boundaries of peer-to-peer connectivity across several miles, secure from unwanted surveillance or interception. Untethered to agency networks or local communication platforms, each Lynq PRO device serves, in essence, as a network hub.

As the devices spread across the search area, the network expands to provide thorough situational awareness. In real time, the device offers law enforcement location and timestamping of possible evidence, messaging about missing persons or potential threats, or tracking movement of resources or emergency-response personnel. It also integrates seamlessly with mapping applications, such as the Android Team Awareness Kit (ATAK), to offer enhanced specificity in locating persons or securing evidence.

“It offers detailed, real-time location at a granular level,” said Griffith. “That’s a stark contrast to the ambiguous data many search parties are forced to deal with. That difference translates into saving lives and securing critical evidence.”

Easy to establish, water-resistant, and ruggedized, the Lynq Pro is keenly suited for the most severe search and recovery missions.

“It can handle whatever you throw at it,” said Griffith. “Whether it’s a waterfront or on a mountaintop, law enforcement can hit the ground running. With the Lynq PRO they can stay connected and track the location of their team and evidence throughout a search.”

More Information >

Add your comment

Shopping Cart