CAPE CORAL, Fla. — $250,000 is how much money the City of Cape Coral is asking the state for, in order to help fund a real-time crime center requested by the Cape Coral Police Department.
Cape Coral Interim Police Chief Anthony Sizemore says, their new crime center will be very similar to crime centers you'd see within the Fort Myers Police Department and Lee County Sheriffs' Office.
“That we would be able to have analytic software, take all of the camera license plate readers, and hardware throughout the city, and funnel into analytics to be able to utilize it for crimes in progress for investigative purposes, for investigative purposes for after the fact. We’re are also going to embed our planning unit to take that real-time information and use it for targeted future planning and budgeting,” said Cape Coral Interim Police Chief Anthony Sizemore.
According to Interim Chief Sizemore, Cape Coral Police has requested this funding during several budget cycles. The requests have made it all the way to the governor's desk, but the pandemic has caused a delay for approval.
“It’s another side effect where the unknowns of the budget, what would be the long-term financial impact of the state, at the very beginning of the pandemic caused the governor to veto it based on the unknown, but we know what those impacts are, public safety is a priority of this governor, so we've repackaged re-tooled and re-submitted,” said Sizemore.
Sizemore says this will be a great benefit to not only the City of Cape Coral but the entire Southwest Florida region.
“Through our partnerships in the area, a lot of crimes do not obey jurisdictions, and a lot of criminals do not stay in one geographic area. So I think it’s important for law enforcement officers to work together and this will enable us to do that,” said Sizemore.
However, while this is a great benefit to our area, Sizemore says, he wants people at home to know, this is about fighting crime not invading privacy
“All of the information that we would be gathering from and analyzing is already out there. We're not asking for any new big brother or any new eyes to be out in the community, this is already existing technology. It just gives us a better way to timely and quickly analyze it to deploy it to the public,” said Sizemore.