Eyes In The Sky At Wayne State University
Wayne State University is being watched.
More than 500 video cameras.. placed strategically across campus.. are monitored 24 hours a day by the University’s police department.
“We can never have too many cameras,” said Melissa Lesperance, who supervises the dispatchers who make use of the technology for the benefit of the campus community. “They’re the eyes in the sky. They are officer safety tools. We’re keeping the public safe from the sky.”
Police Chief Anthony Holt provided Detroit 2020 with access to the command center. “We’ve got various locations on here now. But if they’re targeting something, they could take that one screen and put it up here. And everything’s being recorded here also at the same time,” Holt said.
He says the technology–and the department’s policing techniques–are making a difference. “Since 2009, we’ve showed a 42% reduction in major crime categories. Robberies, larcenies, car thefts and at the end of this year, I think we’ll be approaching a 50% reduction.”
58 sworn and commissioned police officers patrol the Wayne State campus to protect and serve the community. They also work hand-in-hand with Detroit Police and the Wayne County Sheriff.
“If we hear a call for assistance, even outside of our boundaries, we’re going to make that run,” Holt said.
When “Ye Olde Butcher Shoppe” on Woodward was broken into recently, the call for help went first to Wayne State Police.
“We’re an open campus, so where the west side of the city cuts through the campus to go to the east side. We have major bus lines running through campus and we’re part of the bigger community so we take that responsibility,” Holt told Detroit 2020. “If there are problems in crime, in safety, then we’re going to be part of the solution.”
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