CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - If Charlotte's bid lands the 2020 Republican National Convention, it could bring in big bucks for the local economy. It could also help keep you and your family safe for years down the road.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officers say the gear they received from the Democratic National Convention in 2012 is still keeping the city and county safe today.
"It pretty much all came from the DNC funding," Lt. Mike Barron says.
CMPD's special event command center, license plate readers and cameras in crime hot spots are just some of the equipment that was obtained through funding for the DNC and are still in use six years later.
The command center gathers personnel from transportation, fire, medic, special services, etc., all to keep the city safe on those weekends the population multiplies in size.
"Most recently we opened this room during the CIAA tournament," Barron says.
Outside the building, the license plate readers and cameras regularly patrol where officers cannot.
"Having eyes in places we normally wouldn't," Barron says.
The department reports that just in the year 2017, the equipment led to more than 300 arrests, 27 missing people found and more than 500 stolen cars and tags recovered.
"Those are cars that ordinarily would not have been recovered by traditional means," Barron says.
Whether the city will land the 2020 RNC convention is still up in the air, but the department says a successful bid could mean an overhaul for them, as old technology gets stale and the city keeps growing.