In light of the recent Boston massacre, the presentation of video surveillance was indisputably instrumental in the identification of the two perpetrators who executed the senseless, violent acts. The captured video surveillance assisted federal authorities use of high tech facial recognition software to positively identify the two suspects.
In addition to the video surveillance that was supplied by local businesses, there were countless photographs and video clips that were taken by cell phones and digital cameras that had been turned over to authorities for further analysis. These photos and video images, captured by bystanders, in fact led to the identification of the suspects in the area of where the bombs exploded.
As a U.S. Army Veteran who was deployed overseas in a combat zone, I know first-hand of the dangers and threats that terrorists impose on Americans and people they profoundly hate. I have lived through countless mortar attacks and improvised explosive devices (IED), and must say it is something that should not be experienced on our home territory. Federal authorities have intercepted countless attacks against the U.S. as well as foreign countries and continue to do a superb job. Nonetheless, it is up to local authorities to gather intelligence and forward suspicious activity to federal authorities. Local police may not always detect such activity, so I encourage citizens to report any and all suspicious activity to police immediately. The growing embrace of technology into every aspect of our lives makes it feasible for citizens to be instrumental in assisting with crime detection and ultimately, prevention.
In addition to reporting suspicious activities, I encourage all business owners to install video surveillance cameras not only inside their establishments but also have at least one camera pointed outside their establishment, specifically covering a sidewalk, roadway or parking lot. Homeowners are also encouraged to install video surveillance devices on the exterior of their residence. Though video surveillance will not prevent crime it is certainly a deterrent.
A joint effort between citizens, local businesses, faith based organizations, first responders and local authorities is essential in fighting the war against terrorism as well as everyday crimes. We must all maintain vigilance and remain alert of our surroundings to keep our communities and our families safe.
Ptl. N. Reyes 299
Lakewood Police Department