Antiterror Cameras Capturing Crime in Boston
Federal homeland security grants totaling about $23 million have allowed Boston to install more than 450 security cameras since 2002 at the city’s subway stations and at some bus stations.
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) expects to install 50 more of the digital fiber-optic cameras by spring. MBTA Transit Police are using the digital images from surveillance cameras to arrest suspects who otherwise would probably not get apprehended.
So far, roughly a dozen crimes have been solved using footage from the cameras. Officials say the cameras enable police to gain important clues such as clothing details and distinguishing features like tattoos. They also say the digital format allows recordings to be clearer than those on videotape because the images are stored on hard drives and do not degrade over time.
Sergeant Detective Michael Adamson says detectives recently purchased a new video enhancement tool “because of the anticipated increase in forensic evidence that we’ll be holding at the station.” However, some individuals are concerned about how the camera system is used when people are not doing anything wrong.
Abstracted by the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center (NLECTC) from the Boston Globe (01/29/07); P. B1; Daniel, Mac; Smalley, Suzanne.