5 YEARS OF CCTV FOOTAGE

Po­lice say cam­eras are ‘in­valu­able’

Stanthorpe Border Post - - FRONT PAGE -

LIT­TLE more than $70,000 was poured into a project five years ago - with the re­sults prov­ing in­valu­able.

On July 31, 2013, big brother made its way to our CBD. For the first time Stan­thorpe wel­comed 14 CCTV cam­eras that were po­si­tioned be­tween Folke­stone and Lock streets.

The is­sue of a CCTV sys­tem for Stan­thorpe was first raised more than 15 years ago dur­ing com­mu­nity con­sul­ta­tion.

The state govern­ment – through the De­part­ment of Lo­cal Govern­ment, Com­mu­nity Re­cov­ery and Re­silience – com­mit­ted $28,000 with $2500 from the Stan­thorpe Cham­ber of Com­merce and the re­main­der from South­ern Downs Re­gional Coun­cil.

“I am very con­vinced it will make a huge dif­fer­ence to the way we op­er­ate,” former Stan­thorpe Se­nior Sergeant Mark Ire­land said.

Fast for­ward a few years and cur­rent Stan­thorpe Se­nior Sergeant Ger­ard Brady says the CCTV sys­tem has been a god­send.

“I know from my own ex­pe­ri­ence in the last 12 months, com­ing from an area where I was in a sim­i­lar sized town with no cam­eras, to one that’s got them, they’re ab­so­lutely in­valu­able from a polic­ing per­spec­tive,” Snr-Sgt Brady said.

“Both for in­tel gath­er­ing, also for of­fences, de­tect­ing of­fences, fi­nal­is­ing and solv­ing them – they’re a win-win.

“The last cou­ple weeks we’ve had a spate of wil­ful dam­ages and in­stantly, within hours, we’ve iden­ti­fied the of­fender, which or­di­nar­ily we might never find.

“There’s been nu­mer­ous in­stances which I could rat­tle off where crimes have been solved as a di­rect re­sult. And some I have no doubt wouldn’t have been solved with­out it.”

The cam­eras are still tech­ni­cally the prop­erty of

❝ From our per­spec­tive the more cam­eras the bet­ter re­ally

— Snr-Sgt Ger­ard Brady

South­ern Downs Re­gional Coun­cil, but the po­lice mon­i­tor them and have ac­cess to footage when­ever deemed nec­es­sary.

A coun­cil spokesman said there was no im­me­di­ate plan to in­stall any more.

Snr-Sgt Brady said there’s still plenty of re­gional cen­tres who don’t have cam­eras and for Stan­thorpe to have them this long was ‘pretty awe­some’.

“If peo­ple know there’s a cam­era there they’re gen­er­ally less in­clined to com­mit of­fences. From our per­spec­tive the more cam­eras the bet­ter re­ally.”

CAN­DID CAM­ERA: Se­nior Sergeant Ger­ard Brady said ac­cess to CCTV has been in­valu­able to lo­cal po­lice.

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