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Case Studies

Super recogniser eyes opportunity

For more on the first Security TWENTY conference-exhibition of 2017, ST17 Midlands in Nottingham earlier this week, see the March 2017 print issue of Professional Security magazine. Meanwhile here’s some news about one of the visitors.

In recent years including at ST events we’ve featured the ‘super recognisers’, the Met Police’s officers and civilians who are some of the estimated one or two per cent of people who have a knack for recognising a face, from a photo or CCTV footage, and putting a name to it, useful for instance for linking repeat offenders to crimes. One of those has been Kenny Long, who has left the Met and set up as Super Recognisers International. He spoke to Professional Security of how he’s trying to offer super recogniser services to police and private industry. He’s talking with a Premier League football club, for example; to spot banned fans and to bring about banning orders in the first place. The Met’s super recognisers have already done some work at events in London such as the Notting Hill Carnival, and music and other festivals, to combat pick-pockets and mobile phone thieves.

Kenny sees another application for the skills in shopping centres (such as recognising shoplifters). Kenny recalls how he recognised someone wanted, while off duty while serving, and detained the man in a supermarket who was doing a petty theft – ‘all he had was a bag of doughnuts’ – who indeed turned out to be wanted for armed robbery. When speaking to ST events on the subject, Mick Neville made that point about how those caught for theft from business may be linked to other, yet more serious, sorts of crime.

Another use Kenny points out is tracing, or at least aiding, in time-consuming cases of missing persons. Kenny reminds us that the people to be recognised are not automatically suspects – the person that you or the authorities want to identify may be a witness, so as to progress a case.



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