Chester County Sheriff Considers Surveillance Cameras to Reduce Crime

CHESTER COUNTY, S.C. (CN2 NEWS) The Chester County Sheriff met with several other leaders in the community to discuss new cameras that would zero in on one specific target. Sheriff Max Dorsey says in an effort to reduce crime, he’s considering surveillance cameras that capture license plates.

“We have such a rural community here in Chester County, and we don’t have enough deputies to really patrol the entire county,” said Dorsey, “And so how do we try to mitigate that? Well, we use technology.”

Dorsey invited a company called Flock Safety to speak about their cameras.
The company says its cameras capture license plates and the vehicle make, model and color.  For security reasons, Flock says the images are stored for 30 days before being deleted.

Dorsey says the captures would be placed on public roads and highway, and can’t be used to detect speed. Dorsey also says his focus is on fighting bigger crimes, specifically shootings.

“Shots are fired into a home, and there is no one on the street,” said Dorsey, “There are no witnesses. If we’re lucky, we will find some shell casings on the ground.”

Dorsey says the cameras would help narrow suspects when there are otherwise no witnesses.  Council-member Michael Vaughn, who attended the meeting with Flock Safety,  also addressed security concerns.

“If you’re doing something you shouldn’t be doing, then you should be concerned. Anybody else shouldn’t have a problem with it.”

Vaughn says he supports installing cameras, and so does council-member Alex Oliphant.

“”We’re undermanned, the staff is under-payed, we have a large spike in violent crime. And a way to possibly mitigate that is with technology,” said Oliphant.

Flock Safety says it costs $2,000 to lease one camera for a year.  The county has not yet decided if they’ll move forward with installing the cameras, or what company they will work with.