Screens put police in picture

Constable Charis Bool reviews some of the CCTV camera images from around Midland. Picture: Bruce Hunt www.communitypix.com.au d426354
Constable Charis Bool reviews some of the CCTV camera images from around Midland. Picture: Bruce Hunt www.communitypix.com.au d426354

Midland Police are now able to monitor multiple CCTV cameras, set up across the Midland central business district, 24/7 from their headquarters on Spring Park Road.

The City of Swan recently installed monitors at the station to assist police to detect anti-social behaviour or other offences being committed in the area.

More council-owned cameras are planned in the near future to extend the reach of the long arm of the law.

So far, about $600,000 has been spent on the cameras but Snr-Sgt Craig Davis said there was more funding available from the budget for the Midland project over the next 12 months.

‘More than $1 million will be spent on the cameras and the monitoring system from federal, state and local government monies,’ Snr-Sgt Davis said.

He said the cameras make police work more efficient in dispatching squad cars to jobs.

‘We can monitor the occurrence and decide what number of officers need to be sent,’ he said.

The CCTV monitoring system allows for the cameras to be swivelled on to ‘off camera’ incidents and they can also zoom.

Police also report that more members of the public are coming into the station to report offences with their own personal security camera footage.

Snr-Sgt Davis said some of the footage was excellent quality which resulted in charges being laid.

The footage also can be tendered in court as evidence.

‘We encourage residents to consider installing security cameras both as a deterrent to would-be thieves as well as evidence of any offence committed,’ he said.

Previously City of Swan residents in Ellenbrook and The Vines voted to maintain security patrols in their areas.

‘Accord Security was appointed to provide patrols for the next two years,’ City of Swan Mayor, Charlie Zannino, said at the time.

‘The service was funded through a levy to ratepayers in the areas covered by the patrols and a contribution from the land developers.

‘There have been patrols in these areas for more than 10 years and every two years we go back to the community to ensure it still wants the service.’

Cr Zannino said security personnel would attend incidents reported to them or communicate with police on issues raised.

The patrols are particularly tasked with reporting anti-social behaviour, graffiti, vandalism and any suspicious activity in attempts to try to keep the community safe.