Are cameras in Dunbar reducing crime?

Posted at 7:39 PM, Jul 14, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-14 19:39:03-04

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Residents in the Dunbar community gave mixed reviews, Friday, on whether cameras installed near Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Veronica Shoemaker have reduced crime in the area.

This comes after police made arrests in two separate shooting cases that happened over the span of a week. Some people in the community believe the cameras have had positive impacts. However, others say the $300,000 investment has not made a difference. "You can't deter crime with cameras. The only thing you can do is hopefully identify someone, but as far as stopping crime, you can't stop it with cameras," said one resident. 

However, Lt. Jay Rodriguez at the Fort Myers Police Department disagrees, telling Fox 4 areas with surveillance cameras are statistically proven to be targeted less for crime. He believes the cameras have worked well with other components to make the community feel more secure and allow for more cooperation. "I definitely feel we're getting a lot more cooperation from the community, and that's evident with our case closures," he said.

There are no cameras installed on Dora Street or South street a few blocks away, where shots were fired this week. Howver, Lt. Rodriguez said they could always benefit from more. "There's been talk about expanding the camera system, but for now we'll take what we can get," he said.

Fox 4 reached out to the Fort Myers City manager to find out if we could expect the camera system to expand any time soon. We will update this story as soon as they respond.