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Command Centers Turn to Video Surveillance to Improve Response Times

  • 2 wk ago

After Newport News, Va., unveiled its real-time crime center (RTCC) last year, the city saw a tangible, near-immediate boost in its crime-fighting abilities, Newport News Police Department Chief Steve Drew says. 

“We’ve caught homicides on video,” Drew says. “Trials that may have been hung juries become plea agreements. We had a really bad carjacking, and because of license plate readers, we were able to find that vehicle in a neighboring jurisdiction in about 90 minutes.” 

“It speeds everything up,” Drew adds. 

RTCCs have become an increasingly popular tool to fight crime in recent years, says Eric Piza, a professor of criminology and criminal justice at Northeastern University and subject matter expert for the Crime and Justice Research Alliance. And perhaps their primary value is the integration of various data feeds, including video surveillance, into a centralized command center, granting public safety agencies remarkable capabilities to pool resources and track threats. 

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