San Diego Resident Uses Crowdfunding to Buy Neighborhood Video Surveillance System

A woman aims to raise $2,500 to purchase a camera system to watch over two busy intersections.

SAN DIEGO – Fed up with repeated crime in her mid-city neighborhood here, Bethanie Black decided to get proactive and do something about it. She’s launched a GoFundMe page and is asking area residents to help raise $2,500 to purchase two video surveillance systems to monitor two busy intersections, KGTV, an ABC affiliate, reports.

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Among the law-breaking common to the College Area neighborhood, she says, is car theft, prostitution, property damage, mail thieves, illegal dumping, lewd behavior, and that’s for starters.

“It’s not a bad neighborhood, but with El Cajon Boulevard being so close, I think criminals tend to shop in other people’s neighborhoods,” said Black.

Black’s inspiration for the crowdfunding came from another area resident who installed an eight-camera surveillance system around his home several years ago. Over the years, Maurize Rios’ cameras captured numerous criminal acts.

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In addition to the cameras, Rios was also able to get the city of San Diego to put up Neighborhood Watch signs that warn people that video and audio surveillance is in effect. Below the signs, residents passing by can also see pictures of people most recently caught in the act of a crime. They can use their smartphone to scan a code that takes them right to the surveillance video captured by neighborhood cameras, according to the report.

Since Rios installed his surveillance system, at least nine other neighbors have done the same. His actions empowered them to take back their community.

“If Maurize and I get these systems going, I’d love to help other communities do the same thing,” said Black.

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