A COMMUNITY plagued by anti-social behaviour could soon be installing its own CCTV.
Members of Caia Park Community Council are on the brink of buying a camera which could be programmed to focus on the worst crime hotspots.
It is hoped the camera, fixed to a lamp post, would deter petty troublemakers and increase successful prosecutions against more serious offenders.
The council is due to make a decision at its next meeting but already has money set aside for the scheme.
Cllr Maurice Jones said the sooner the camera could be installed, the better it would be in the fight against crime.
He said: “You can set the camera to look in specific places and then download what you want, all from a parked car out of sight.
“It’s a very good system. If we can target hotspots it’s a great weapon to have.”
Brian Pritchard added: “And if the problem moves to a different area we can just move the camera.”
The community council could also buy ‘dummy’ cameras which could be dotted around the estate as a further deterrent.
The system was demonstrated by Martin Williams, of Digital Surveillance Wrexham, at a previous meeting of the community council.
He told the group the cameras were almost completely vandal proof because of the extremely tough materials used.
He said CCTV footage can be instantly downloaded and used as evidence to prosecute offenders without police needing to contact Wrexham Council or individual businesses to request a taped copy.
The technology is said to provide high-definition images that can pick up tiny details such as the date on a passing car’s tax disc.
North Wales Police Sergeant Darren Jacks said the feedback the Wrexham force was getting from other communities which already use the technology was positive.
He said: “You would have the support of a PCSO to monitor the footage if you invested in it.
“I think in Caia Park we can justify making using of it in most places. The way we have been using it for arrests is great.”
But he did say he would have to make sure there was no intrusion into privacy through the use of CCTV in this way.
Areas identified as potential locations included the back of Queensway shops described by councillors as “particularly bad for drugs” and Coed Aben, which suffers from anti-social behaviour.
The community council decided to postpone a decision until next month’s meeting, as Wrexham Council is also reviewing its CCTV provision.
Cllr Brian Cameron said: “We’re all in favour of this camera but let’s think about how we’re going to do it.”
Residents have their say...
Philip Dolan, 61, said: “I think it will definitely help bring down the level of anti-social behaviour.
“The problems are everywhere at the moment so this is a good idea.
“As long as it doesn’t take the bobbies off the beat and it’s as well as them.”
31-year-old Lia Wareham said: “I think having an extra CCTV camera around here would be a big help.”
And Dorothy Mitchell of Caia Park Environmental Group welcomed the proposal, saying: “I think it’s a brilliant idea.
“Anything that can help with crime and anti-social behaviour like vandalism is worth a go.
“There’s also a big problem with fly-tipping in the river so it could even be used for that sort of thing.”
But Gerrard Bennett, 28, was less enthusiastic, saying: “There’s enough CCTV round here already.
“There are a few dotted around on the main buildings and it’s only kids anyway.
“They’ll just move on somewhere else if a new camera’s put up.”
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