South Bend announces new camera registry program, aiming to make solving crimes more efficient

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- The South Bend Police Department is updating its camera registry-- a list of available cameras that officers and investigators would be able to pull footage from.

The city had a similar program-- established almost a decade ago-- but now it's looking to expand upon it and help make solving crimes more efficient.

The Sync South Bend Camera Registry is a list of security cameras at homes and businesses all around the city.

Police would be able to gather video if they believe cameras recorded a crime and use that information in their investigation.

According to the SBPD, having this registry would help streamline investigations, as it would help cut down on officers needing to canvass for houses with security cameras near an active scene; all they would need to do is access the registry to see if any cameras are nearby and request to view that footage.

“If something happened on your street or in your neighborhood that we think your cameras may have captured, then we will contact you," said Ashley O'Chap, with the SBPD. "That’s attractive for people who may feel uncomfortable having police at their house asking for a physical CD or flashdrive to get this. Now they can just click it and upload it like a YouTube video.”

The city opted to update the registry program to be able to work with the SBPD's new Real Time Crime Center, unveiled last month.

If businesses had registered their cameras under the previous program, they would need to re-register them with the city, however the process is relatively simple, and free.

All you need to do is enter an email, phone number, address and how many cameras you have on or inside your property.

However, police will not be able to access these cameras remotely, unless they have installed a CORE device that would integrate that camera into the department's Real Time Crime Center network.

The SBPD hopes that by having more businesses and homeowners registering their cameras-- and choosing to integrate them into the network-- they will be able to close cases much quicker.

“This is something we’re continuing to work with businesses right now, to get them integrated into our system and we think the more that integrate into this, it’ll just be more helpful for those in the Real Time Crime Center to be able to track crimes and stop suspects before they get away," said O'Chap.

If you are interested in registering your camera, you can do that here:

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