Iowa police uses video management software to improve public safety

Ottumwa sees crime decrease since deploying Milestone's XProtect solution


COPENHAGEN – August 24, 2012 . Responsible for the safety of more than 25,000 residents, the Ottumwa Police Department has improved service and protection of this Iowa town since implementing Milestone XProtect video management software (VMS) and strategically mounted surveillance cameras. Crime rates have decreased significantly with live events streaming to alert dispatchers.

“The Milestone solution has made a tremendous difference in the safety of downtown Ottumwa: there has been a significant reduction in crimes across the board. With a live feed from around the city and instant access to video recordings for evidence, we publicize crime-related events to the town’s residents to further reinforce safety,” says Jim Clark, Chief of Police, Ottumwa Police Department (PD).

A small city with a proportionate police force, Ottumwa had its share of crime like any city in the nation – thefts, vandalism, drunk and disorderly people, burglaries and muggings. Looking to help enforce the law and improve protection of citizens, the police determined that a video surveillance solution would help manage crime and improve the rate of convictions.

Working together with consultants Electronic Technology, Inc. (ETI), the police designed a comprehensive surveillance system to provide a full high-definition (HD) video surveillance solution for monitoring the city streets, with the ability to view and download recorded video. Current Technologies Corporation (CTC) supplied and installed a wireless network with Milestone XProtect Enterprise VMS and 32 Axis network cameras.

“Our design was based on the requirement for a robust solution that could be expanded when needed,” states Dan Carr, Senior Systems Integrator, ETI. “Implementing an IP platform such as Milestone was the only viable solution for Ottumwa.”

A wireless Motorola local area network (LAN) powers the system backbone. In about four weeks’ time, Axis Q6032-E PTZ dome cameras were stationed strategically in the intersections that police identified as problem areas.

“Installing the cameras and Milestone system was very easy for our technicians,” says Darryl Bosak, VP of Operations, CTC. “The main issues that arose from this implementation were just ensuring the cameras and networking solution had enough power to run 24/7.”

The video feeds travel through the broadband/wireless LAN and are broadcast at the police station where the operators and a select team of administrators have been given access. From the station, administrators assigned to operate the Milestone XProtect software have the ability to control the cameras live in real time: to zoom in on an event, face or license plate; to take screen snapshots for fast evidence; to move the camera views a full 360 degrees; or to change the screen views to other cameras in an instant.

“The 911 and dispatch operators required an easy-to-use system, something that wouldn’t interfere with their already important duties. From the end-user perspective, we’re not dealing with technical people, so the entire department appreciated a point-and-click solution. Milestone’s XProtect user interface offers a simplified solution but with a level of professionalism, quality and reliability the force required to serve and protect the city,” states Darryl Bosak, VP of Operations, Current Technologies.

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