CCTV and Crime

The U.K. is renowned for it’s use of Closed Circuit Television (CCTV), which they claim helps reduce crime. But CCTV might be coming to Canada.

The Chief of Police in Ottawa, Vern White, said at a public debate last year,

I believe it would assist the police in criminal investigations and may assist citizens who make complaints against police, possibly.

According to Mark Ertel, Criminal lawyer with Bayne Sellar Boxall and president of the Defence Counsel Association of Ottawa, CCTV with not reduce crime, while infringing on privacy and civil liberties.

The Shagya Blog comments,

It appears that the kind of crime which cameras are supposed to control is of the opportunistic type … drunks starting fights and common assaults, problems which have become commonplace in urban Britain. However the average murder rate in the UK was approximately 12.6 /million from 1985 to 2005 according to this item on the BBC two years ago. That’s 1.26 /100,000 which is considerably lower than Canada’s rate over approximately the same period according to Statistics Canada.
…Both Toronto and Montreal despite the bad press these major cities have had in the last few years have homicide rates well below the national average of 1.85/100,000. Regina …was still the crime and murder capital of Canada as of last July according to this CBC report.

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