It was over a year ago that New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin announced his plan to install CCTV cameras in high crime areas of the city. He claimed that 50 cameras would be operable within a week, and a total of 200 online by the end of the year.

Well the scheme has not worked out quite the way it was supposed to. There are 250 cameras installed, but only 85 of them actually work, and the reliability of those 85 cameras is questionable. The city council was informed by a member of law enforcement involved with the project that “about 85 cameras that work most of the time.” This is hardly a stellar performance.

While this may not sound like the most successful project ever tackled, it has had it’s successes. One fine example has been documented by WWL TV. As a direct result of the CCTV recording they were able to apprehend Jowanda Netter age 19, in connection with the shooting of a 20 year old unidentified man, who incidentally remains in serious condition.

The arrest was made within 24 hours of the incident. While Ray Nagin still has much to answer for about the abject failure of his CCTV crime fighting initiative he can take solace in at least one crime being solved, as the following picture shows.

Simon Barrett

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