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Cameras cited in 23% crime drop in Fla. city

Video units were installed around Tampa for use during the Republican National Convention; footage cited as helping resolve cases early on in investigation phase


By Richard Danielson
Tampa Bay Times Staff Writer

TAMPA, Fla. — Crime in downtown Tampa has dropped 23 percent since last year, and while police don't give all the credit to the surveillance cameras bought for the Republican National Convention, they're glad to have the technology.

"They're just another tool in our toolbox," police Capt. Mike Baumaister told the City Council on Thursday, adding that he thinks the cameras had an impact on downtown crime.

The reduction came in the total number of four serious crimes - burglary, robbery, auto burglary and car thefts - for the first seven months of 2013, compared with the same months last year. (Car thefts actually rose, but the others fell.)

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