Police Streaming Video to Help Fight Crime

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BEACHWOOD, OH -- The Beachwood Police Department is one of the first in Ohio to use "real time" video from their dash cams. Now, the department wants to make their video system even better and faster to keep residents safer.

For years, Beachwood police have been streaming live police video right into their dispatch center. It gives officers at the station the opportunity to assess a situation.

"It enables our supervisor to be in multiple places at the same time. If we make an arrest and there's a concern in the jail from his car or her car, the supervisor can access the jail camera, check on an officer who is on a call and be doing this all as it's happening," said Chief Mark Sechrist of the Beachwood Police Department.

Currently, all of the police cameras work on a cellular system, so sometimes the dispatchers will see video that is distorted. Now, the city would like to install a new fiber wireless network that would be faster and distortion free.

Officer Daniel Grein is the IT specialist for the Beachwood Police Department.

"We are upgrading and desire to upgrade to a fiber network across the city that will then allow us to hook up a wireless mesh network to improve performance for both the police and fire departments and the computers they remotely access," said Officer Grein.

Beachwood police will also be able to use smartphones so they can go to a crime scene and stream live video right back to the dispatch center.

With the fiber network in place, police will be able to use body cameras, so there's always an extra set of eyes on the police officer and the scene.

"I think the next step will be live body mics that the officer does not have to manipulate. He can wear it and it transmits automatically also," said Officer Grein.

People we spoke to believe it's a great idea for the police departments to have a faster network because it allows them to do their jobs faster and easier.

"I think that if it's something that will protect us and members of our community and keep us safer, then I'm all for it," said Beth Kuhel of Beachwood.

"I think it's a great idea. I don't see any reason why they shouldn't. They can use it for evidence, but also if a police officer is doing anything bad, that will show up also," said another resident.

Beachwood police are also testing out body cameras that can wirelessly stream back video to the station.