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Councilmember: LAPD Should Have Access To Traffic Cameras In Wake Of Boston Bombings

(credit: istockphoto.com)

(credit: istockphoto.com)

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles police should have access to the city’s real-time traffic cameras following the Boston Marathon bombings, where surveillance footage proved vital to the manhunt for suspects, a councilman said Wednesday.

In a motion, Mitchell Englander has asked police and transportation officials to look into how compatible the current systems are and how they may be integrated.

“With the rapid capture of the Boston bombing suspects by the FBI using digital imagery and closed circuit video surveillance, the need for an integrated and effective system accessible to Los Angeles city law enforcement has never been greater,” Englander said.

The motion calls for access to 460 traffic cameras that are being used by transportation officials to be shared with police to help catch suspected criminals and patrol communities.

The cameras are located at traffic signals throughout the city and are used to track the movement of traffic.

Police increasingly rely on camera technology, using their own surveillance cameras in high-crime areas and devices like automatic license-plate-recognition systems that use small cameras on patrol cars to scan license plates for stolen vehicles, Englander said.

Earlier this week, San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr said he wants more cameras along Market Street to give police extra eyes during major events.

In the past, the thoroughfare has hosted well-attended parades, including celebrations of the San Francisco Giants’ World Series Victories, Chinese New Year and gay pride.

Next month, Market Street will serve as the starting point to the city’s wacky Bay-to-Breakers race.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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