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Metro Newsroom 

Metro Police Unveil Public-Safety Cameras

Friday October 27, 2006

Mayor Jerry Abramson and Louisville Metro Police Chief Robert White today unveiled MetroWatch, the police department’s newest crime-fighting and crime-prevention tool. The $300,000 pilot program, which launched this week, features public-safety camera systems to monitor and serve as a deterrent to street crime and other illegal activities in public places.

“Our residents and representatives from our council asked that we implement this surveillance-camera system because it has worked in serving as a deterrent to crime in other communities,” Abramson said. “We want criminals in this community to know that our police officers and our residents will not tolerate illegal activity in our neighborhoods.”

The first phase of MetroWatch includes the installation of cameras in the LMPD Fourth Division at the intersection of Fourth and Oak streets. Those cameras are operational at this time. Cameras will also be installed by the end of November at the corner of 38th and Markets streets in the LMPD Second Division. These locations were selected after a crime activity review showed the public-safety camera systems would be beneficial in these areas.

LMPD is currently identifying two additional sites for the cameras, including one in the Newburg area. Specific locations for those cameras will be announced at a later date.

The cameras will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, through the use of a digital feed provided by Insight Communications. Video images from the cameras are transmitted to secure computer servers housed at the LMPD Community Relations substation in Fairdale. LMPD staff, including the 574-LMPD crime-tip line unit, technical-operations personnel and division detectives will monitor the camera feeds. They will alert beat officers to criminal activity and provide video copies for further investigation.

“We’re starting MetroWatch as a one-year pilot program,” said Chief White. “The community’s desire and the success we have with the program will be the ultimate factors in determining whether we decide to expand MetroWatch to even more neighborhoods.”

Department officials will track MetroWatch throughout the pilot year to look for ways to enhance the system and potential new locations.