Law enforcement agencies across the country – from L.A. to places like

Law enforcement agencies across the country – from L.A. to places like Bedford County, Virginia – are voicing concern over Google’s Waze traffic app. According to a story published by the Associated Press today, the app – which enables mobile users to monitor real-time road conditions and traffic – is drawing the ire of cops thanks to a feature that allows anyone with a smart phone to mark police officers they see on the street on a map so other users will know where to watch out for things like speed traps.

But cops say that’s not all the feature might allow for. According to the AP story: “To some in law enforcement, this feature amounts to a stalking app for people who want to harm police. They want Google to disable that feature. … Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck complained in a letter to Google’s chief executive on Dec. 30 that Waze could be ‘misused by those with criminal intent to endanger police officers and the community.’”

While the AP story is quick to point out that so far there are “no known connections” between an attack on police and Google’s Waze app, in his letter Beck did point out that Ismaaiyl Brinsley, who ambushed and killed two New York police officers in December, was a known user of the technology.

Closer to home, the Waze app has also caught the attention of local law enforcement agencies.

“We’re aware of Waze, but there isn’t much you can do about it other than being aware,” says King County Sheriff’s spokesperson D.B. Gates. “We always have concerns with anything criminals could use to locate our deputies if they were looking to harm them.”

Gates, however, was unsure whether King County Sheriff John Urquhart has taken an official position on Waze, referring us instead to the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs. WASPC spokesperson Jamie Yoder has yet to return a request for comment for this story.

That said, Sergeant Gates did offer a dose of reality: “Asking for it to be disabled may work as a request to one entity,” the spokesperson says of asking Google to disable the police-marking feature on Waze. “But unless you outlaw all similar apps or programs, [it] seems that there are probably plenty of developers to build and make available another one that does the same thing.”