Newark cops cast expanding eye across the city
Excellent look at how Newark’s growing camera surveillance system fits into the NPD’s program to lower crime in the city. Reporter Ali Winston helpfully provides a bit of context around the debate over camera effectiveness.
One study showed that instead of deterring crime, cameras appear to displace it. A preliminary analysis of the San Francisco Police Department’s blue-light cameras near the University of California-Berkeley found a decrease in homicides within 250 feet of the cameras was offset by a spike in homicides outside the camera’s range.
McCarthy acknowledges the lack of a preventive effect but says that is not necessarily bad. “It’s not going to deter it, it’s only going to move it – which can be good, because you might want to move it to a location where you can suppress it easier,” McCarthy said.
Since the beginning of the year, Newark has seen a drop in homicides and a reduction in gun violence. The cameras, he said, are part of the department’s overall strategy and cannot be separated from other initiatives, such as the narcotics squad and the fugitive-apprehension unit.
“It’s not one thing we do, it’s everything we do,” McCarthy said.