Illinois College Wants to Expand Camera Network to City Streets

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Police Department officers believe adding more cameras to areas where students often hangout will help solve more crimes.

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has asked the city council here to consider a proposal that would allow the college to expand its campus-wide surveillance system onto city streets.

University Police Chief Jeff Christensen said adding more cameras to areas where students often congregate would help his department, as well as city police, reports.

Surveillance video from UI’s 1,088-camera network has helped solve 15 cases from August 2012 to September 2013. In one case, the network camera system helped identify a registered sex offender as the attacker of a female student.

Christensen maintains that the department doesn’t want to install the cameras everywhere in the city, only where they will be effective.

Additionally, the chief said that his department worked with the American Civil Liberties Union to develop a policy to meet the concerns about personal privacy and individual rights when the university installed the camera system in 2008.

If approved, the effort would be the first time the university has installed security cameras on property it doesn’t own.

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