FORT WORTH (CBS11) – Delayed several months, a new camera system in Fort Worth focused on illegal trash dumping is starting to return evidence.
Code enforcement officers are working several cases, including some that involve felony-level crimes, based on pictures and videos from the new cameras.READ MORE: Dallas ISD: A Lot Involved In Keeping Doors Open During COVID-19 Surge
In December 2017, a picture of a truck and trailer was clear enough to track down the vehicle owner, convince him to confess to the crime, and pay a $364 fine.
Only about half of the 115 cameras are installed so far, but officials expected another 20 percent to go up within the next few months.
Purchased for around $500,000 in August, the cameras didn’t start going up until closer to the end of 2017.READ MORE: Grapevine Real-Estate Fund Executives Convicted Of Fraud
Code compliance director Brandon Bennett said the department had to wait for mounting hardware, computer software and equipment to assist with evidence storage.
Then in January 2018, the department discovered a problem with permissions to mount the cameras on some of the utility poles in the city. The Fort Worth Police Department, he said, is currently working out an agreement with utility owners.
The delay has meant some locations the department pointed out last year as evidence for needing the cameras, still don’t have them. A chronic problem spot off Greenbelt Rd in East Fort Worth has more debris on it now, than it did during the summer.
However Bennett said the problem is happening as much in neighborhoods, as it is in out of the way locations.MORE NEWS: BBB: Be Careful Of Fake Websites When Ordering Your Free COVID-19 Tests
The code compliance cameras are now also tied in to a new system of police department cameras, enabling the two department to work together and share evidence on cases.