LEEDIR, a new law-enforcement tech product sponsored by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, was an hour away from holding their initial press conference on November 1, 2013, when the worst happened: A mass shooting at Los Angeles Airport. Paul Anthony Ciancia, 23, was later taken into custody on charges of killing a TSA officer and injuring four other people.
For Sheriff Lee Baca and telecommunications entrepreneur George D. Crowley, Jr., it was bizarre timing: LEEDIR was designed specifically to help law enforcement sort through video from terrorist attacks, mass disasters, and street crime. As they were gearing up for their press conference, the Sheriff’s Department was putting their product into real-life use. The suspect was quickly apprehended by the FBI, but it was a hell of a day for a product launch. “As we were getting ready to deploy this platform, the suspect was caught,” Crowley said.