New security cameras helping OPD solve crimes

The cameras take high-resolution photos of license plates, then run the plates for offenses.
Published: Mar. 15, 2023 at 8:48 PM CDT
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ODESSA, Texas (KOSA) - Do you ever get the feeling that you’re being watched?

It’s perfectly normal. Security cameras and birds are everywhere.

But lately, there’s been fewer flocks of birds and more Flock cameras, which have become a useful tool for the Odessa Police Department.

“Any surveillance system is good because it’s a crime deterrent,” said OPD Cpl. Steve LeSueur. “Flock is better.”

What makes it better is simple: the resolution. While most security cameras offer grainy, black-and-white footage, Flock cameras shoot in high resolution.

Holly Beilin With Flock Safety said the purpose of the cameras is to take photos and analyze license plates. If the camera detects a plate wanted in a crime, it forwards that information to the police.

The cameras were recently used by OPD to track down two people wanted in a string of car thefts and burglaries.

But with the cameras snapping photos of every single car, what does it do with all that info?

“So, if the vehicle captured is never involved in a crime, which is a vast majority of them, that data is hard deleted in 30 days,” Beilin said.

But more than tracking cars, there’s always the worry about tracking people.

“This technology can not be used to just track someone walking down the street,” Beilin explained.

Making it less of a public adversary and more of an assistant.

“It definitely has helped us solve more cases,” LeSueur said.