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Surveillance System Features More Than 1,000 Cameras In City

June 11th, 2018 · 19 Comments · Analysis and Comment, Law Enforcement, News and Events

Perez surveillance

Bridgeport Police Chief Armando “A.J.” Perez speaks in the new Bridgeport Police Fusion Center, located in the Morton Government Center. CT Post photo Ned Gerard.

A law enforcement tool includes more than 1,000 cameras in city neighborhoods to catch bad guys, but could the good intent become intrusive? We lose some liberties in the cause of public safety. The Police Department has expanded the Fusion Center operated out of the Margaret Morton Government Center at 999 Broad Street, an advancement to “monitor situations in real time,” according to Police Chief A.J. Perez. This program was initiated under then Mayor Bill Finch but has built out over time.


CT Post reporter Tara O’Neill has more:

If a red car is spotted driving away from a crime, within minutes Bridgeport police can track down every red car in the city.

This is made possible by the police department’s new Fusion Center, at 999 Broad St., which is staffed around the clock to monitor the 1,200 cameras around the city, Lt. Paul Grech said.

“But it’s not Big Brother watching,” he said.

The department uses the center to focus on quality of life, Grech said–in some places that means watching out for possible drug transactions or shootings, in others it means catching illegal dumpers.

“This place allows us to monitor situations in real time,” Police Chief Armando Perez on Wednesday, standing between two walls of screens displaying footage from around the city.

Full story here.

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19 Comments so far ↓

  • Andrew C Fardy

    Gee its great to see Perez in another photo. The main question here is HOW MANY COPS DOES THIS TAKE AWAY FROM PATROL AND WHAT WILL THE OT BILL BE?

    • Rich Augustynowicz

      The ACLU has a problem with this!! I guess it’s not a good thing that technology such as this may reduce crime and killings a bit. Then again the ACLU might be right- the jails might get overcrowded and then the government would have to “de-criminalize” more offenses to take care of the overcrowding problem. Win win situation yes?!!!!

    • Andrew C Fardy

      This thing is going to cost us a fortune. Wrked properly it might be a good thing but with the incapable upper management of the PD this will become a cash cow. I hope we are not going to be paying regular cops at $60,000 plus to do this job. If we are the first thing that should be done is FIRE PEREZ.

  • Stringfellow

    Well let’s see if a member of the ACLU or someone they care about is a victim of a crime and one of these cameras helps solve it, perhaps they will feel different about them.

    Until then say home, have all your needs delivered to your home because like it or not cameras are everywhere.

    Get used to it.

  • Donald Day

    I think these camera’s are a great idea and NYC has many of these across the city. These cameras may not be a deterrent to crime, but they sure as hell can show the culprit that committed said crime to make it easier to arrest these criminals.

  • Bob Walsh

    “Johnny Utah’s owners have paid a $20,000 fine for serving minors and will reimburse the Norwalk Police Department nearly $4,000″
    Hey, Perez why don’t you try doing this with bar owners that serve minors rather than watching them on TV.

  • Bob Walsh

    Its the LESS is more school of policing in Bridgeport.
    Clueless, hopeless and helpless.
    Instead of giving the CT Post a lesson in Big Brother Is Watching, why not try getting back to basic and try doing some Community Policing instead of the high-tech surveillance. The article says it all when it admits that “Though police weren’t able to confirm what exactly was caught on that camera, an officer was dispatched.”

  • Baffled in Bridgeport

    Won’t make much of a dent if there aren’t any cameras in City Hall…

  • John Marshall Lee

    Fallacy at work…..we are population largest but area small, as we so often hear. So watching the City on video as if it were a virtual show of some type, prevents public safety personnel from being known, and in return keeps the safety folks unknowing of the people they serve. How does that connect with a trained and engaged force that respects people.
    So the City spends millions on technology to find red or yellow cars? And multimillions on pensions covering overtime pay though they did not tell the taxpayers? And checks and balance procedures in the City are under fire. Time will tell.

  • charlie

    I am old so I remember the cop on the beat. They got to know the community and the community got to know them.

  • Kelvin Ayala

    Most of you commenting think this technology is new. This command center has been around for like a year and the money has already spent. This thing has existed BEFORE the photo enforcing meters that have been around for 18 months just for a frame of reference. A+ Technology moved the northeast HQ to Fairfield Ave in the old cadillac building about 2 years ago. Do you know why, Bridgeport was thier biggest client. If I’m correct this system began under finch and is now up to 1000+ cameras, But not new.

    Very cool, sophisticated system though.

  • Rich Augustynowicz

    That’s correct and some of these cameras have been in place for quite some time. Lt. Grech has done a great job with this task that he was assigned to. He cares about public safety and has always been an effective and dedicated officer, especially as a hard working “street cop”. Kudos to him and those on the department like him.

  • Harvey Weintraub

    I’d say the cameras are useful,crime in our city is out of control now,with shootings,robberies,etc happening multiple times daily.We need all the help we can get.they will be especially helpful with all the drive by shootings,hit and runs etc.

  • Bob Walsh

    As long a they stop and smile for the camera!

  • DC Faber

    This could be a great addition, but without regular patrols where the officers know the communities and have built trust, this will only serve as a brief PR move for Ganim and Co.

  • Donald Day

    While this may very well be a PR stunt it’s a valuable asset in the BPD tool box to fight crime. Cities in America and across the world are using this technology to apprehend criminals after a crime is committed because they can put a face to the crime and utilize the media to get people to identify those involved anonymously. Sometimes you have to love Bridgeport more than you hate Joe Ganim.

    • DC Faber

      Very true, but the relationships on the ground foster trust and catching criminals can become easier. Technology alone cannot substitute community policing.

  • The Bridgeport Kid

    This is a crime fighting tool. Remember that stuff, crime?

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