Unmarked police cars are nothing new. Back in the days of CB lingo they were called "plain white wrappers" because of their unassuming nature, but the Harris County Sheriff's Department in Texas runs a bunch of Chevrolet Camaros that are literally wrapped in plain white. Almost, anyway.

These cars aren't actually unmarked. At a casual glance, one would see a white Camaro with snazzy wheels but a closer look shows Sheriff markings barely visible on the sides. A report from Chron calls the fleet "ghost cars," and it's not the first time the Harris County Sheriff's Office – which includes the city of Houston – has stacked the deck. Another group of plain white wrappers entered the scene in 2013 with the goal of blending in on various toll roads to watch for lawbreakers.

 

We get a glimpse of these newest offerings courtesy of @BruceAllmiighty on Twitter, who shared a couple of images showing the fleet parked inside, and a single Camaro rolling down the highway. With extremely faint branding on the sides these cars technically aren't unmarked, but the obvious goal here is to not stand out in a crowd. That is, at least until it's time to pull somebody over because the cars are outfitted with lights and sirens like any other police vehicle.

Controversy over the use of unmarked patrol vehicles has existed for decades. Without clear markings identifying the vehicle, it's very easy for someone to impersonate a police officer and attempt to stop people. Arguments also persist about police having a very visible presence to deter crime versus what many say is an effort to hide and possibly encourage bad behavior. On the flip side of that, sussing out the bad apples is certainly easier when those bad apples don't know they're being watched.

Then again, traffic cameras and boring silver SUVs are excellent at blending in and observing others without being seen. What additional purpose could a bunch of nearly unmarked Camaro cop cars serve? Honestly, we have no idea....

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