N.J. police request volunteers for surveillance camera registry

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Police in South Jersey are reaching out to the public to cut back on crime. (WPVI)

Police in South Jersey are reaching out to the public to cut back on crime. They want anyone with a security camera to let them know it's there in the event something happens within eyeshot.

Security cameras are everywhere these days, and often capture crimes as they happen.

Surveillance video can break a case wide open, as it did with a jewelry store theft in Lambertville. And that's why police departments are asking people to sign up for voluntary registries, letting cops know that your home or business has a security camera.

Beverly Public Safety Director Rich Wolbert explains, "What we are asking for is if there is a crime that is committed that will be able to contact them when we know they have a camera that may be pointed in the direction that we need."

Beverly Police Sgt. Theresa Matthews says, "It gives us a better description of the suspects. It might give us a vehicle description, possibly we may be able to get a tag from that."

Police in Beverly say video from businesses and residents has helped to solve a number of cases.

In Moorestown, locals who sign up for the registry are given decals. The police department is asking everyone with the camera to get on board.

Anna Thompson from Akira Restaurant says, "If there's a crime, our cameras have a certain distance that we could see, and I think it would be a good idea."

Peter Vosbikian of Moorestown tells us, "We have a security camera. I don't think it's something I would completely go out of my way for, but if it's available as a resident, why not?"

Some have real concerns about privacy and sharing video with police.

Steve McFadden of Collingswood says, "Absolutely not, no. I'm not in the law enforcement business and I should not be asked to be in law-enforcement business."

Moorestown Police Chief Lee Lieber says security videos have helped to solve residential burglaries in town and security camera owners always retain complete control.

Chief Lieber says, "We don't have any access to your system. We just want to know who might have the video so if we have a crime in the vicinity we can look you up."

Many departments have online registries, so if you're interested, contact your local police.
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n.j. newssurveillance cameraLambertville
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