The City of Memphis and the Memphis Police Department recently invited residents and businesses of Memphis to participate in a new public safety initiative aimed at fighting crime.
Connect Memphis is the new initiative in which citizens utilize an online portal to register their security cameras to help solve crimes in the community, according to a press release by the City of Memphis regarding the initiative.
Through Connect Memphis, the Memphis Police Department (MPD) is hoping that citizens will register their security cameras and help create a community-wide public safety ecosystem.
Residential and commercial property owners and businesses are invited to register their security cameras with MPD so that video files can be used in the event of a criminal investigation or emergency incident in order to “quicken the evidence-gathering process.”
The program is “designed to provide critical and actionable information that speeds up investigations and emergency response and keeps residents and businesses safer,” according to the press release.
“The Memphis Police Department is excited to introduce this technology that will allow us to further partner with our community members,” MPD Chief CJ Davis said in a statement. “By utilizing Connect Memphis, this will serve as a deterrent and aid with the collection of video evidence in a timely and convenient manner.”
MPD notes that when cameras are registered, it does not give live video access to the MPD – it only gives them camera location information for use when an incident occurs. Investigators will contact camera owners only if they need assistance collecting camera footage.
Meanwhile, residents and businesses who wish to share live video feeds with MPD in emergencies to improve employee safety and police response will be given an option to upgrade their video security systems by installing a small CORE device on their network, the press release adds. In addition, in order to preserve privacy, live video can optionally be shared only on alert, using a smartphone app or manual trigger button, at the camera owner’s discretion.
“Having the ability to quickly review video footage in a criminal investigation is critically important,” Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland said in a statement. “With Connect Memphis, our officers will know where active cameras are in relation to a crime scene and be able to obtain the footage more quickly or request it to help with their investigation. We hope you will sign up and join us in the fight against crime.”
To register a camera with the Memphis Police Department or to upload a video directly to investigators, please visit connect2memphis.org.
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Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network.
Photo “CJ Davis” by City of Memphis. Background Photo “Memphis Police Department Squad Car” by Memphis Police Department est.1827.