WITHIN 12 hours of Albury’s CCTV system being switched on, police had already brought a would-be criminal to justice.
The 52-camera network, which was finally activated after months of delays on Tuesday, picked up a purse-snatcher who was quickly tracked down by Albury police.
Cameras covering Dean Street and Volt Lane are now fully operational and active around the clock.
Albury police Superintendent Evan Quarmby said the quick arrest had set the tone for how his officers could use the cameras to track and catch criminals.
“A male offender has already been brought to justice in relation to a purse snatch on Dean Street, directly as a result of being identified and tracked by these cameras,” he said.
“It shows just how important this initiative is for the safety of the community.”
The council received a $450,000 grant from the federal government to install the cameras in 2016.
A variety of safeguards are in place to protect the privacy of law-abiding citizens, including restricted access to footage for council workers, a formal application process for law enforcement to access recordings, as well as compliance with the CCTV codes of practice and standard operating procedure.
Superintendent Quarmby said the standard of the cameras exceeded what he had seen before.
“Certainly the quality of the footage is fantastic, it allows us to have a very clear picture of what is going on,” he said.
“There is a proactive element to this in that people will know that the cameras are out and about, they’re less likely to commit crimes.
“Should they be so inclined to commit a crime, we now have the footage and technology to bring them swiftly to justice.”
Albury mayor Kevin Mack said the council was exploring the possibility of installing more cameras in the Volt Lane area, as well as certain parts of Lavington.
“We’re now looking at the success of this and gauging where we can put other cameras,” he said.
“Whether that is in Lavington or in other hotspots identified by police, we need to be clever about how we do it.
“The Volt Lane precinct is one area that has a lot of blind spots, we’re still investigating what that could look like.”