Security Technology Executive

SEP-OCT 2017

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www. • September/October 2017 • SECURIT Y TECHNOLOGY E XECUTIVE 27 THE CHALLENGE: Address violent crime in the City of Detroit When it comes to facing any challenge, particularly in an urban environment, understanding the situation goes a long way. In Detroit, Michigan, city officials looked at occurrences of crime and found that, in the first half of 2015, nearly a quarter of their violent crimes happened within 500 feet of a gas station. Once they knew where crime was happening, city officials were in a better position to prevent or mitigate its impact. The best chance any city's police force has of preventing or stopping crime is to intervene as quickly and knowledgeably as possible. When police officers arrive on a scene after the fact or if they enter a situation unprepared, it is much more difficult for them to do their jobs. While surveillance cameras can provide crucial information about what is happening in and around any location, simply adding more does not go the full way to helping police officers do their job. To leverage the full benefit of video surveillance cameras, a police force must have easy access to video footage in real-time as well as coverage of as wide an area as possible. Knowing all this, the City of Detroit did not simply add more video cameras to the areas around gas stations. Instead, to help reduce violent crime in their city, Detroit set up a new initiative, called Project Green Light, which connects video streams from a variety of businesses, particularly those located around gas stations, that can be monitored in real-time by the police, when a call comes in from that business. THE SOLUTION: CONNECT AND SHARE LIVE VIDEO FOOTAGE WITH POLICE Project Green Light came online in January of 2016. As the first public-private community part- nership of its kind, the Project combines real-time crime-fighting and community policing to improve neighborhood safety and promote the growth of local businesses. At its core, Project Green Light strengthens the city's efforts to prevent, identify, and solve crime. To begin, the Project partnered the Detroit Police Department with eight gas stations that installed or already had high definition video surveillance equipment set up around their facili- ties. In addition, the police department and the city also assigned staff to receive, monitor, and analyze video feeds from the various partnering locations. Today, over 100 businesses are able to transmit live footage to the Detroit Police Department's downtown headquarters, where it can be monitored by a 40-member police unit. This footage helps officers catch criminals after the fact and search for suspects. It also allows them to pay extra attention to areas where criminal patterns seem to be emerging or where crimes typically occur. THE RESULT: INCREASE IN PUBLIC AND BUSINESS SAFET Y In a recent press conference, the Mayor of Detroit stated that, after the Project had started, some of the Project Green Light businesses had expe- rienced up to a 50 percent reduction in violent crime at certain stores, gas stations, and other businesses in the area. As a result of the Project's success, other businesses are now keen to join, and the City and technology partners are making it easier for them to do so. And the list of other U.S. cities interested in implementing the Project is growing. But the ultimate success of the project is measured by the reduction in crime. Employ- ees, customers, and citizens are safer as a result of this initiative. Today, more than half the world's population lives in cities. By 2030 there is predicted to be more than 41 mega cities around the world with populations of 10 million or more. Image Courtesy of Project Green Light Detroit signage on the walls of the Subway attached to the Marathon at the intersection of W McNichols & Wyoming.

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