Orange County (N.Y.) DA Introduces Video Surveillance Database

Private security camera systems can be registered so that law enforcement can contact owners if they discover evidence of a crime may have been captured by a particular camera.

GOSHEN, N.Y. – Orange County (N.Y.) District Attorney David Hoovler on Thursday (Sept. 8) announced the launch of a community partnership program aimed at creating a database for private security camera feeds.

Addressing an Orange County Chamber Commerce meeting, Hoovler said the program invites homeowners and businesses to voluntarily register for the program so that law enforcement can contact them in the event that evidence of a crime may have been captured by a particular camera.

Information from registrants will be stored in a video camera law enforcement portal, a secure website that provides a database where only the county’s law enforcement agencies may access information about the location of video camera systems throughout the county, reports.

During a criminal investigation, only police officers may access the portal to determine the location of relevant registered video cameras. They may also see the location of cameras on an interactive map. Also, as investigations progress, officers may contact the cameras’ owners and request permission to access images on the cameras to aid in the investigation, according to the report.

No law enforcement members or district attorney’s office staff will be able to access the cameras remotely. Through the use of the portal, District Attorney Hoovler hopes to establish a partnership between the community and law enforcement that will provide a valuable tool in the fight against crime countywide.

“Evidence obtained on video security cameras have proven to be one of the best methods of apprehending criminals and convicting defendants who are caught in the act of committing a crime,” Hoovler said. “This program is a further extension of the type of community policing and community prosecution partnerships that my office has been fostering since I became District Attorney. The more information we have about a crime, the more likely it is that we will be able to bring perpetrators to justice, and to exonerate the innocent, a goal which is in everyone’s best interest.”

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