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US Los Angeles neighborhood group in Melrose installs license plate readers amid crime wave

08:00  08 december  2021
08:00  08 december  2021 Source:   foxnews.com

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A neighborhood group that monitors crime along a portion of Los Angeles ’ famed Melrose Avenue is moving forward with a plan to install license plate readers along the corridor amid a spike in shootings and brazen robberies. Melrose Action, which tracks crime and breaking news in the area, raised ,000 after months of fundraising. The effort is intended to aid Los Angeles police and county sheriff's detectives with their investigations, said Peter Nichols, Melrose Action co-founder.

Melrose Action raised ,000 for license plate readers , including ,000 from L . A . City Councilman Paul Koretz. The readers start going up this week. Read full story Author: Christian Martinez.

A neighborhood group that monitors crime along a portion of Los Angeles’ famed Melrose Avenue is moving forward with a plan to install license plate readers along the corridor amid a spike in shootings and brazen robberies.

Melrose Action, which tracks crime and breaking news in the area, raised $32,000 after months of fundraising. The effort is intended to aid Los Angeles police and county sheriff's detectives with their investigations, said Peter Nichols, Melrose Action co-founder.

"There’s been such a sustained crime wave hitting our particular segment of Los Angeles," he told Fox News. "First we went through a wave of repeated homicides, then we went through a wave of armed holdups… that targeted tourists and then that morphed into robberies that focused on high-dollar jewelry. People being robbed of their Rolex watches and gold chains just walking on the street would be held up by men with guns."

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Melrose Action, a group that tracks crime and breaking news in the bustling shopping corridor and surrounding neighborhoods between La Cienega and La Brea avenues, spearheaded the fundraiser, which launched in August. But license plate readers and the data they capture have come under fire as they have grown in popularity among law enforcement agencies. Last year, the California State Auditor said the Los Angeles Police Department and three other California law enforcement agencies had failed to provide sufficient privacy protections for millions of people. images captured by their

Now neighbors are coming together to take action and help make their community safe again. LOS ANGELES - A community hit hard by surging crime is taking action. Residents in the Melrose area say enough is enough. They are now coming together to install plate recognition technology along the streets. "Even a criminal who might be wanted by a plate , associated with a plate , maybe from Miami-Dade County, who could be roaming this area and may have committed a crime here, that car is potentially traceable and law enforcement could intervene." Melrose Action has already raised more

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Melrose Avenue, like other parts of the city, has been plagued by robberies and shootings in recent months. Most recently, a jewelry shop was targeted and victims in a separate incident were approached by eight men who robbed them for jewelry and other luxury items.

Both encounters came during an increase in follow-home robberies in which victims are targeted by suspects in prime locations – Melrose Avenue being one of them – and followed home where they are confronted, sometimes violently.


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In September, diners at a sidewalk cafe on Melrose were robbed in broad daylight when a pair of armed suspects approached them and made off with their shopping bags in less than 20 seconds. A month earlier, a sneaker store employee was killed during a dispute over a raffle near the cafe.

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Plate Readers In Melrose DistrictCofounder of the community group Melrose Action, Peter Nichols joins Chris Holmstrom to discuss how the group raised funds to purchase and install license plate recognition cameras, in cooperation with law enforcement, that will be placed in anonymous locations around the Melrose District. Beverly Hills Police Department Hires 5 New Officers In Wake Of Crime UptickLaurie Perez reports from Beverly Hills where the police department announced Saturday that its hired five new officers and increased patrols in the city as violent crime and robberies have increased.

The group , Melrose Action, has raised thousands of dollars, thanks largely to residents, to buy license plate recognition cameras. So far, they've been able to fund 15 to 20 cameras. The cameras will be strategically posted on private property and at some businesses along Melrose Boulevard to help police crack down on crime . Surveillance cameras are easy to spot throughout the neighborhood , but residents say the license plate recognition cameras are what police say are the best tool to track down the thieves. "I think it says empowerment that neighbors want to be part of the solution, instead of

Jayren Bradford was fatally shot outside a Shoe Palace after he tried to defuse an argument between a group of people.

Fox News has reached out to the LAPD for crime figures for its Wilshire Division, which includes the Melrose area.

Nichols also cited the recent trend in smash-and-grab robberies in retail stores. A Nordstrom department store about a mile from the area was hit twice in a matter of days last month.

He said the cameras are being funded through donations from residents. City Councilman Paul Koretz, who represents the area, contributed $10,000 from his discretionary fund, Nichols said. Another $10,000 came from a local businessman.

At least a dozen cameras will be located in the business district and residential areas. The group is contracting with Flock Safety, which provides license plate reader equipment to law enforcement agencies and neighborhood groups such as homeowners associations.

"Our goal is to help our law enforcement partners in helping apprehend these suspects who are terrorizing our city," Nichols said.

The footage can be accessed by someone designated as the administrator and is deleted every 30 days, according to the company. Melrose Action will assist law enforcement with access to the footage within a day of each request, Nichols said.

Oakland mayor asks state for help to fight violent crime .
Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf (D) has requested help from California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) to better catch criminals in the area. Schaaf wrote to Newsom asking that he use license plate readers on the ramps of state highways and increase the presence of California's Highway Patrol in and around Oakland in an effort to locate criminals. The mayor also asked for the state's highway patrol Retail Theft Task Force to look into recent robberies in the area.

usr: 1
This is interesting!