Ocean City Watch Surveillance Planning to expand
OCEAN CITY, Md- As another year rolls around, the Ocean City Police Department is looking to expand their City Watch Surveillance Program. They want to add more cameras to the resort town, especially in hot spot crime areas that need more surveillance.
Ashley Miller, the Deputy Communications Manager of OC Police Dept., says that they will be adding to the 250 cameras they currently have, and each camera will be used as an investigative tool to protect the community.
“We are using it for their safety and we are monitoring it all the time and what happens is if something does happen in that area our dispatchers are able to tell our officers in real-time, exact location,” Miller said. “So you’re getting a first hand account information, instead of trying to wait for a 911 call to come in and through a third party, its actually providing a better service to everybody.”
Ocean City Police feel their plan to install new cameras throughout is a positive, but not everyone is in favor.
“I don’t really think that the government needs to be having cameras everywhere watching what we’re doing on an individual basis and I’m not sure the crime is so rampant around here that its even needed,” Richmond Carley, a local, said.
Police aren’t the only ones that see the benefits of the cameras, some locals also feel that it could help.
“I think its needed, its good for security, you know it keeps crime down,” Emil Paul, a local, said.
The City Watch Surveillance Program is nothing new. It has been something the OC Police Dept. works on every year. They use crime analytics to determine the best locations to put new cameras.
“It is something we have been expanding each year on and now we are just looking to expand that program even further with this new budget year,” Miller said.
While some people may not agree with the new cameras, alternatives may be too costly.
“We would have to hire a large number of officers to replace that so if we are able to expand the cameras, we’re able to maintain current staffing and still see all of ocean city and the hot spot areas,” Miller said.
The OC Police Dept. is hopeful that the new cameras will serve the city well and resolve problems quicker.
They are still mapping out final details, like when these new cameras will be installed and how many they will need, but they plan to discuss it at several upcoming meetings.