The Great Falls Police Department has launched the Security Camera Registry and Mapping program (SCRAM).
The program allows people and businesses to register their exterior surveillance camera systems so that, in the event of a crime near their home or business, police may contact the system owner to see if their camera(s) possibly recorded an event relevant to the investigation.
Similar SCRAM programs are in use in scores of communities across the country.
Lieutenant Doug Mahlum of the GFPD stressed that officers and/or civilian personnel do not have the ability to remotely access or control a system registered with SCRAM.
Registering a system will facilitate officers and investigators to view a map of the area where a crime has been committed, or where suspects may have traveled. This will help officers identify potential investigative leads, including suspect identity and crime facts. The GFPD says:
- The GFPD is only asking for footage obtained from outside surveillance cameras if a crime occurs within the area.
- The GFPD will not “tap” into citizen or business surveillance systems.
- The goal for this program is to deter crime and promote public safety through collaboration between the GFPD and the community we serve.
- A registrant can opt out of the program at any time.
Having a surveillance system registered with GFPD allows officers and investigators a database of system owners and their contact information.
To register a camera or surveillance system, or to learn more about the program, click here to visit the GFPD website .
Once registration is submitted the system owner will receive a letter from the GFPD, confirming the registration information, and including a SCRAM sticker to affix in a readily identifiable area.
The GFPD said: "We treasure the support we receive from the Great Falls community. The SCRAM program is another opportunity for community members to become engaged with GFPD and aid in protecting our great city."
Extended interview with Lt Mahlum: