By Kevin Deutsch
A new, state-of-the-art NYPD surveillance system is now active in the Northeast Bronx, with ten cameras recording large swaths of the area 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, authorities said.
The system offers birds-eye views of streets in the 45th Precinct, which encompasses Co-Op City and City Island. The program will likely to be expanded to other sections of the Bronx, officials said.
The system’s capabilities are vast: the camera lenses can surveil sprawling areas, but NYPD operators can also use their high-powered zoom functions to capture close-ups of suspects, witnesses, and victims, as well as scan license plates and identify vehicles.
The ten cameras cost about $100,000 each, officials said.
Their footage is monitored around the clock by police at an NYPD operations center—the department’s latest foray into high-tech camera surveillance in the five boroughs.
The NYPD has been heavily criticized of late for using facial recognition technology to try and identify potential crime suspects; a practice the department has defended as both vital and effective.
Separately, the Bronx District Attorney’s Office has created a sprawling directory of private surveillance cameras installed in and outside Bronx businesses; a voluntary program that allows prosecutors to check footage from over 700 cameras.