Police in Amsterdam say it's the next best thing to having more officers on duty. Security cameras are being placed around the city, allowing officers to have eyes on more than one place at a time. As YNN's Maria Valvanis explains, the next phase of the project will be teaming up with the school district.
AMSTERDAM, N.Y. -- Just because you don't see the police, doesn't mean they don't see you. Security cameras are being placed in different spots around Amsterdam allowing officers back at the station to have eyes all over the city.
"It's kind of like having a full time police officer sit there to babysit things," said Chief Gregory Culick.
Over the next few months, at least 20 cameras will be up and running in high crime areas like the Five Corners. Chief Culick says the department already has cameras monitoring the city's new traffic patterns that went into effect Tuesday and has been able to prevent three or four crimes by having cameras at Riverlink Park.
"There was a large party tent down there someone was trying to set it on fire, they caught the kids in the act," said Culick.
The next phase of the project is updating the district's camera system so that police cannot only keep an eye on the schools from the station, but also on their smart phones.
"The guys can actually pull over and look at the cameras and say okay. this person's in this room," said Culick.
"It's a sake of comfort knowing we have people monitoring the cameras now," said Superintendent Tom Perillo.
The school has already begun the process of updating their current security system to transmit back to the police department and Sheriff's office. A safety precaution Superintendent Tom Perillo says will stop many crimes from happening in the first place.
"Once it gets out that the school district is actually being monitored by the Amsterdam Police Department and the Montgomery County Sheriff's office 24/7, that word will get out there," Perillo said.
"Those cameras have proved invaluable to us already and they will in the future," said Chief Culick.
Because, of course, city resident's safety is priceless.