Sunday, February 25, 2007

Crime-fighting with YouTube!

An AP story by Eric Tucker (link in title above), reports the growing use of YouTube by police departments. While the story notes that YouTube also gets used to record and publicize excessive police force in making arrests, the focus is a new and growing adoption by police to post videos of suspects. They ask the public to help them identify the people in the video. Sometimes it works really well, as in the incident

in Hamilton, Ontario, in Canada, where police in December posted a 72-second surveillance video to locate a suspect in a fatal stabbing outside a hip-hop concert. Det. Sgt. Jorge Lasso sent messages on Web sites frequented by hip-hop fans alerting them to the clip. He said the video received around 35,000 "hits," and police had enough information within two weeks for an arrest.
Other times, it has not been so quickly successful.

The article briefly mentions the issues of privacy that may be raised by this use of Internet technology. It's hard to analogize this posting of videos to the old "Wanted" posters. Can you say, "Ripe for a law review article?"


Jim Milles said...

And, oddly enough, I was interviewed on our local Buffalo CBS affiliate on this very same topic!

Betsy McKenzie said...

Once again, Jim, I trail behind you in matters technological! As it should be now and forever. :)