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Challenged with patrolling approximately 4.6 square miles consisting of more than 16,000 residents and several hundred businesses, the Prospect Heights Police Department (PHPD) needed a video surveillance solution to assist with their daily efforts to protect and serve their community. Specifically, the police department wanted a way to better monitor increasingly problematic community areas and deter the rising crime rate. Due to the locations of some of the neighborhoods from the police station, PHPD required a surveillance system that would allow their staff the ability to monitor this area remotely and in real time.
After a successful test case, PHPD Chief of Police Jamie Dunne met with Xtivity Solutions, a local security integrator, to implement a high-end security system that would help minimize the current community issues. At the center of the solution was the exacqVision video management system (VMS) software and Arecont Vision IP cameras, purchased through Anixter, a global distributor of security solutions.
Xtivity Solutions utilized an all-outdoor wireless solution to support the transporting of video communications from the remote building locations back to the public works building. An additional, sophisticated wireless network was set up to connect the police department, public works building, the Metra Train Station, village hall and community residential areas in real time.
Xtivity strategically placed six Arecont Vision 8 megapixel cameras on the apartment buildings around the perimeter covering the entrances and exits. One 20 megapixel camera was installed into a police box overlooking a city park. Cameras were also installed at the Metra train station to monitor indoor station areas and outdoor locations such as boarding platforms and parking lots. The cameras have met the goal of serving as a deterrent to minimize the crime.
The exacqVision VMS software utilizes Arecont Vision’s multi-imager panoramic cameras and high definition functionality. The digital PTZ feature allows PHPD to zoom in on high definition views from each of the lenses. In live or recorded mode, police officers can use this as a tool to get further details for investigations. The video feeds from the cameras are sent wirelessly to a centralized location and then transmitted to the police station over their existing wired network. Xfinity Solutions’ design of this network allows for future expansion of the surveillance system by creating a spoke like architecture.
“The purpose of the exacqVision system was not intended to make more arrests but to improve police operations in the community,” notes Chief Dunne. “However, since the exacqVision system has become operational, we’ve seen a noticeable drop in criminal activity. In fact, the exacqVision software has captured video for several incidents that we’ve used to bring criminal investigations to successful conclusions.”
Installing the exacqVision system eliminated the need for PHPD’s officers to constantly patrol the area. PHPD’s staff of 31, including patrol officers, sergeants, records staff, a secretary and chief, all have access to the exacqVision client and free mobile app for remote viewing at any time on nearly any device. This provides access and viewing of the surveillance data from their PC, squad car computers or their mobile phones. The intuitive exacqVision platform required very little training and within minutes of installation, officers and staff members were able to navigate the software. The officers immediately had the ability to control cameras and individual views for each camera location by zooming in or out and panning left or right.
A command center was also designed and installed at the police station. Two 55-inch LCD monitors are being viewed 24/7. If PHPD receives a call indicating a problem in one of the monitored areas, they can look at the high quality video directly from the police station or from their police car to immediately determine what action needs taken.