Shores hoping to install license plate cameras by May 1st
As seasonal residents begin thinking about heading back to their northern homes for the summer, Indian River Shores is working on getting license plate reader cameras online to surveil the town while they’re gone.
Public Safety Chief Rich Rosell said the computer servers needed to operate the system and store the images and license plate search results were installed last week.
Shores town officials also met to talk camera locations. The cameras have not yet been installed, but Rosell said he is shooting for “hopefully, May 1.”
The cameras, which will be deployed at the north and south entrances to the town, read vehicle license plates and run plate numbers through an extensive database, instantly alerting patrol officers of hits – such as expired plates, revoked drivers licenses or outstanding warrants.
With that information, officers will be able to pull drivers over and investigate before they can depart the Shores.
The Town Council approved $70,000 for the cameras back in November, after some initial heartburn about whether or not the public safety benefits would outweigh not only the cost of the program, but also the perceived intrusion into Town residents’ privacy.
Rosell’s white paper analysis of the proposal swayed the council in favor, convincing them the camera system would deter criminals from entering the Town.
“Our research indicates that cameras placed at both entrances into town would be extremely beneficial with regards to identifying possible suspects as well as eliminating alibis for active suspects,” Rosell told the council in November.
The footage from the cameras would be stored in a secure, on-site server in the Shores for privacy and evidence retention, not on an internet server hosted by the camera company.
Rosell has said that footage of the comings and goings of residents and visitors to the Town would only be pulled and reviewed after a crime had occurred. “This solves crimes for us,” he said.
The sensitivity of the cameras can be customized to flag felony warrants and reported stolen vehicles only, or it could pick up every expired tag or unpaid speeding ticket.