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CCTV Does Deter People from Committing Crimes

CCTV is part of our daily lives now, and most of us don’t even think about being caught on camera. The whole idea of having closed-circuit television cameras is to try and reduce the instance of crime in each area that has these cameras. And there is plenty of research to suggest this has been the outcome.

One survey conducted way back in 1998 revealed the trend to deter criminals from committing crimes was present even then. Offenders were asked if they would have refrained from committing an offence if they had known they were being caught on camera. Nearly half (48.2%) said they wouldn’t have gone ahead with the crime. A further 27.7% gave their answer as ‘maybe’, so it is clear the cameras do have a significant and positive effect on crime levels.

CCTV footage regularly used by police

We also know police forces across the country regularly use footage from nearby cameras to help them gather evidence concerning various crimes, and to help identify criminals. But the figures surrounding some instances might still surprise some people.

For example, a BBC report indicated that Scotland Yard used footage from CCTV cameras as evidence in no fewer than 95% of murder cases. There are many instances where people have been identified, caught, and prosecuted for committing crimes simply because they have been caught on camera.

Many people will remember the riots in London back in 2011. Around 5,000 people were prosecuted for playing a part in those riots, and many of them were identified through CCTV footage taken in and around the area at the time.

Keeping our communities safer

It’s always reassuring to know we live in a safe place. The College of Policing has found CCTV is good at reducing levels of specific crimes, such as theft from vehicles, for example. So, by installing and positioning cameras in specific places, with thought to the potential images that could be caught on those cameras, there is a good chance crime can be reduced in many areas across the UK. Indeed, as the information above suggests, there are cases where crimes have been avoided that might otherwise have taken place.

Additionally, these cameras do capture evidence that can be used later if a crime does occur. We can all feel much safer in our local areas thanks to the presence of CCTV cameras.

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