O’FALLON, Mo. – The O’Fallon Police Department used license plate readers to find a missing 87-year-old woman and bring her to safety earlier this month.

This comes as St. Charles County has implemented LPRs along all access points to St. Charles County, in addition to major interstates and secondary roads. Though the tools serve best as an investigative tool in felony and misdemeanor cases, they can also be utilized to find missing people.

According to Flock Safety, a company that helps with LPR operations, O’Fallon police learned a senior resident left home and went missing on her way to a doctor’s appointment. The patient didn’t stop at the doctor’s office as expected on Aug. 18, and her daughter filed a report on her disappearance.

Police acquired information on the woman’s vehicle, entered it into the system and track her down near an interstate. Within minutes of entering the information, police were able to match a camera to her vehicle and locate the woman to safety.

St. Charles County Police Chief Kurt Frisz told FOX 2 last month that LPRs are designed to feed data to a regional intelligence center out of St. Louis County and can help find people across county lines. He adds, however, LPRs will not be used for traffic enforcement.

The FOX Files has followed up with several stories this year on the impact of LPRs and how they are helping counties solve local cases.