The police department at Cedar Rapids, Iowa, as per recent reports is requesting city residents to register their private security cameras with the department. The police officials claim that doing so will enable the investigators to pinpoint where and how many cameras are in the vicinity of the area where a crime is committed.
The departmental website of the Cedar Rapids police department, mentions there are no minimum camera equipment requirements and also assures that the police department will not be monitoring feeds from any personal surveillance systems.
On an interview with The Gazette, Sgt. Laura Faircloth told that this new initiative by the police department is intended to save precious time in an investigation, aiding investigators to timely hunt down criminals who may have been captured by these private security cameras.
“This is a completely voluntary program,” Faircloth added. “For those who register their cameras, the basic information that they are asked to submit will be stored in a database that we created and control. That way, when something does happen, investigators don’t have to search for cameras — they can access the database from their in-car computers and see what cameras are in the area.”
Explaining further, Faircloth cleared that a simple camera registration does not give the police access to the footage. In case of an incident, if investigators found a camera that may have recorded an incident, to collect that footage they still need to approach the camera’s owner to get a copy of the recording.
Concluding Faircloth said, “The only thing this database would do is let officers check to see what cameras are in the area, where they are and who owns them”.