Is Houston ready for downtown surveillance cameras?

Wow, Chief Hurtt really has a thing for cameras:

Surveillance cameras monitored by police could be installed along Main Street in an effort to deter crime in the downtown area, Houston Police Chief Harold Hurtt said today.

He said the project is still in the planning stages, but he hopes to have a least five cameras up this year.

''I know a lot of people are concerned about big brother, but my response to that is if you aren't doing anything wrong why worry about it,'' he said.

Has Council approved this? If it's already in the planning stages, when was the public told of this? Is this something that can go forward without Council approval? It's disturbing that Chief Hurtt is using HPD's manpower shortage as an excuse to install surveillance cameras, a manpower shortage he and Mayor White have shrugged off for quite awhile. Isn't a police officer on a street corner more of a crime deterrent than a camera? Does the city want to play defense forever or does the city want to prevent crime? Is this world-class?

Now. Remember how the Editorial Live Journalists came UNGLUED at the thought of the NSA listening in on terrorist phone calls? Surely they will slap down Chief Hurtt's surveillance cameras.

Right?

RELATED: Sedosi asks:

On the heels of Chief Hurtt's public safety tax proposal, one has to wonder what other trial balloons the Mayor's office wants to float in the coming weeks?

Posted by Anne Linehan @ 02/15/06 07:01 PM | Print |

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