Colorado and many of its Metro-area cities may soon follow Lubbock, Texas’ lead to create a database that combines homes and businesses in a given city that maps out what locations have surveillance systems with cameras. Lubbock started its own “SafeCam” program to deal with the growing property crime problem in its own city limits. The time seems right for such programs, especially seeing as Pueblo was just named “5th Worst City in the US for Property Crimes,” according to FBI statistics.1
“It’s very simple,” Tiffany Taylor with Lubbock Police Department told KLBK News. “Basically, anyone who has a security camera whether you’re a homeowner or a business, you can register that camera with us. We only ask very basic information. We ask for your name, your business name if you are a business, the location, how many cameras you have and which direction that they’re pointing, then obviously contact information.”
SafeCam Program Plan and Details
Basically, the SafeCam database maps out the houses and businesses that want to voluntarily register with the city to be included in the surveillance program.
- The SafeCam program does not give law enforcement access to any cameras or computer systems, but does let them know you have a camera set up and monitoring on the property.
- The only way law enforcement can view cameras and back-up video is if a registered participant shares it with them.
- Investigator do have a right to contact participants, if they think a particular camera system captured something useful in a case investigation.
- The SafeCam program supporters believe that it will also help detour future crimes.
- As a crime prevention tool, investigators hope to use it to find criminal suspects faster and gets them off the streets quicker to prevent other potential crimes.
How Effective are Cameras at Detouring Crime?
Recent studies conclude that surveillance cameras are actually a cost-effective way to detour crime. Here are some of the results of a four-year study conducted by the Urban Institute’s Justice Policy Center in Baltimore:3
- More than 500 strategically placed cameras have driven down crime in nearly all areas they are located.
- The study’s results have also given taxpayers as much as $1.50 for every $1 spent on the surveillance system.
- Similar results were found in Chicago, but in Washington, D.C. no statistical significant impacts to crime were found.
- The most effective surveillance systems were those that were monitored by trained observers with enough cameras to detect crimes that are in progress.
- Some cities have cameras that are programmed to instantly pan in the direction of a gunshot sound.
Acceptance of city-wide surveillance systems are gaining in popularity as people see them as indispensable for fighting crime. Therefore, people are choosing to give up some privacy in exchange for some sense of security.
Contact a Broomfield Property Crime Defense Attorney at The Datz Law Firm
Have you been charged with a property crime, such as aggravated burglary or trespassing? If so, the Broomfield Property Crime Defense Attorney at The Datz Law Firm is here to help you build a strong defense strategy for your case. At The Datz Law Firm, we know how stressful and daunting serious legal problems can be. That’s why we’re here to help you advocate for your rights and help you resolve your legal issues. We’ll help you get through the challenging times, so you can move on the next chapter in your life. To schedule a free, initial consultation, call us at (720) 573-0539, or email us using the contact form at the top of this page.
1“Pueblo Named 5th Worst City in US for Property Crime” published in KRDO News, June 2018.
2“LPD’s new program “SafeCam” hopes to curve property crime with help from surveillance systems” published in Everything Lubbock, June 2018.
3“Study: Crime Cameras a Cost-Effective Deterrent” published in The Baltimore Sun, Dec. 2011.