ROANOKE COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — Privately owned security cameras, in addition to surveilling a home or business, may also record suspicious activity in the surrounding area.
Roanoke County Police Department invites residents and businesses to voluntarily register their security systems, in the event, the cameras captured information that can help investigators save valuable time and solve crimes, according to a statement from the department.
Departments across the country have implemented a citizen security camera program, which lets police know who may potentially have information about an incident in the neighborhood.
Camera registration through the Citizen’s View Security Camera Program provides police only with the location of the cameras. When an incident occurs and police believe a camera may have captured vital footage, authorities will reach out to the owner. Police must ask the owner for permission to view the recording, according to the department.
“You know crime is just crazy. People are crazy nowadays,” said Kimberly Tipps.
She lives in Roanoke County and thinks the new registry is a good idea.
“I used to be a business owner so I know the importance of it.”
She says if she still owned her business, she would register her cameras.
“Crime is shooting up so I think it would be a good idea to have the security cameras so that they can pull that footage,” Tipps said.
She says this is a good tool for police and it makes her feel more comfortable knowing they are using it.
“I know that especially on these roads there could be hit and runs and things like that so I think it’s a good idea.”
John Rigdon works at Nature’s Outlet and thinks the registry could have a positive impact.
“I think that would be helpful. Anytime everyone can work together to try to solve problems or prevent problems that’s a good thing,” Rigdon said.
“Probably also help deter things from happening. People would be aware that things would be noticed.”
Rigdon says he recognizes the value of security cameras because they’ve helped him out in the past.
“We put in a security camera a few years ago and we actually kind of, within a week after doing that, we had an incident where our door, while the store was closed, got damaged and we were actually able to see who did it with our camera.”
If you are interested in registering a security camera or for more information about the program, click here. Personal information provided through the registration process remains confidential, said the department.