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Spotlight surveillance system coming to NJ city

New crime-fighting technology soon to be installed in East Orange will give camera operators more control

By PoliceOne Staff

EAST ORANGE, N.J. — Police will soon monitor the city using cameras with spotlights that illuminate people in the act of committing crimes - then follow and record them.

East Orange will be the first department in the state to install the technology, which will be integrated into the department's existing camera system, Acting Police Chief William Robinson said. The 62 cameras already installed are credited with an 11 percent drop in crime from 2010 to 2011, officials said at a news conference Tuesday.

"High-powered lights will be mounted on or adjacent to the cameras, which are remotely connected to a closed-circuit television system. The footage feeds to a room at police headquarters that’s filled with screens and functions as an intelligence nerve center. Officers monitoring the real-time footage can maneuver both the light and camera in an effort to prevent and deter crime," the New Jersey Star-Ledger summarized.

"How many times (do) camera operators wish they could jump through the video screen and intervene in developing criminal situations while they wait for patrol to arrive?" Robinson asked. "Well, let me tell you, that’s about to change in the city."

The Cordero Group manufactures the $7200 units, which will be paid for by forfeiture funds.

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