8 Questions to Ask When Selecting an eCitation Printer

Electronic citation technology options are growing and improving as adoption skyrockets nationwide. The mobile printer is a key component, and here’s what you need to know.

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Here’s the good news: Electronic citation technology options are growing – and improving – as adoption skyrockets nationwide. In fact, the eCitationCoalition estimates that as many as 60 percent of U.S. law enforcement agencies already use some form of eCitation system. 

eCitation benefits range from higher efficiency and productivity to enhanced safety for officers and the public, to improved accuracy that increases revenue collections.  Mobile printers are a critical component of today’s comprehensive eCitation solutions, which typically also include a smart device such as a laptop, tablet or handheld computer, as well as an eCitation software solution.

Here’s the challenge: Choosing the right mobile printer and other key components of your eCitation system can be daunting.  After all, they’re not all created equal.

To ensure you select the mobile printer that best meets the needs of your department or agency, start by asking these questions:

  • How quickly and easily will the printer connect with the mobile devices your officers use today, and in the future?
  • Is the printer compatible with all major operating systems?
  • What size documents do you need – full-page or smaller format?
  • Is the printer lightweight and compact enough for easy portability outside the vehicle?
  • Are a variety of vehicle mounts, hot-mounts and carry case options available?
  • Is the printer rugged enough to work reliably in extreme heat and cold and other tough environments?
  • Is the solution ready to use out-of-the-box, or will integration assistance be required? If so, is there a cost?
  • Does the printer interface with the software solution you own or are considering? If not, who will make the ‘handshake’ and at what cost?

Next-Gen eCitation: Closing the Loop From Car to Court

Compelling cases have been made for the positive ROI of today’s eCitation solutions and there is plenty of information available to agencies wanting to investigate. The eCitation Coalition is a good source for whitepapers, testimonials and first-hand ROI assessments from public safety agencies who have made the switch.

We’ve seen eCitation systems evolve over the years so it’s valuable to look at how newer systems leverage internet and wireless technologies to enable state, city and local public safety agencies close the loop ‘from the car to the court.’

Today’s best-in-class systems provide seamless continuity and integration between the issuance of electronic citations by officers on the road and downstream processing by the city or county clerk, judicial syste, and courts. Unlike siloed systems of yesteryear, they offer broader scope, significantly expanded functionality, ease of use, and top-notch reliability.

For example, advanced eCitation solutions enable quick database searches for traffic violations or criminal offenses. They can capture the violator’s signature, photo or fingerprint. And some systems can immediately synchronize and submit citation data wirelessly to their department’s Record Management System and other linked entities, such as the court system.

These efficiency and administrative improvements rely largely on technology advances in wireless networking and connectivity, as well as innovations pioneered by industry-leading application developers and manufacturers of devices such as smartphones, tablets, and mobile wireless printers.

Need funding for your eCitation solution?  While the ROI of eCitation systems are well documented, there’s more good news: The Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) program allows states, tribes and local governments to support a broad range of activities and technologies to prevent and control crime based on their own local needs and conditions. Visit https://www.bja.gov/jag/ to learn more.

Why Choose Brother Mobile Printers?

Brother Mobile Solutions’ PocketJet® 7 full-page printers are the leading full-page mobile printers in cop cars nationwide. PocketJet is engineered for use inside public safety vehicles and offers a wide range of creative mounting options for limited space. Brother’s compact RuggedJet® prints smaller format citations (1” to 4” wide) and can be vehicle mounted or carried on a belt or shoulder strap for on-the-go mobility.

Brother offers PJ and RJ mobile printers models that can instantly print high resolution documents from virtually any smartphone, tablet or PC – without downloading any special drivers or interfaces. And since the PocketJet and RuggedJet are thermal printers, there’s no need to worry about running out of ink or toner.

For more information about Brother mobile printers for eCitation systems, visit https://www.brothermobilesolutions.com/solutions/public-safety/  or request a mobile printer to try for free at: www.BrotherDemo-publicsafety.com.

About the Author

Ravi Panjwani is VP Marketing and Product Management for Brother Mobile Solutions, a premier global provider of desktop and mobile printing solutions for a host of industries.