DUBUQUE, Iowa — Officials of an eastern Iowa city are planning to install more surveillance cameras, adding to the nearly 1,000 cameras already in place.
Dubuque has spent about $725,000 over the past four fiscal years installing and upgrading hundreds of cameras, the Telegraph Herald reported. They’re used to monitor intersections and city property.
More cameras will be added to the western part of the city, said Mark Dalsing, Dubuque Police Chief. While police don’t have evidence that shows the cameras have deterred crime, the cameras have been used to help identify and apprehend suspects, Dalsing said.
“We use the cameras every day,” Dalsing said, from helping identify and track criminals to aiding in traffic crash investigations. “Any major case, we are looking at the cameras to monitor routes to and away from the scene and establish timelines. We’re going to the cameras on every major investigation.”
Police used camera footage to make several high-profile arrests, including a man who is accused of sexually assaulting and killing a woman in September 2015.
“There’s a strong possibility that could have been an unsolved murder if not for the cameras,” Dalsing said.
Dalsing said most residents support the cameras and few have privacy concerns.
“We are not looking into residences,” said Dalsing. “The cameras look down the center line of streets as much as possible.”
The Langworthy Neighborhood Association is working with officials to install cameras in the neighborhood. Association member Terry Mozena said he hopes cameras would make people aware that “people are watching what’s happening in the neighborhood.”
City officials said the cameras are primarily meant to monitor traffic, city structures and parks.
City traffic engineers routinely review footage from traffic crashes and analyze traffic patterns to determine ways to improve intersection safety, said city civil engineer Dave Ness.
Information from: Telegraph Herald, http://www.thonline.com