Establishments urged to put high-resolution CCTVs

THE police chief in Dumaguete City is appealing to local officials to legislate stricter measures requiring business establishments to put up closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras, as well as to cooperate in police investigations.

Superintendent Jonathan Pineda on Wednesday afternoon reiterated his call as he said that some business establishments in Dumaguete City, the provincial capital of Negros Oriental, still do not have CCTV cameras despite an existing ordinance.

Also, he noted that those with CCTV cameras either have low-resolution video footages or shorter periods for information storage.

He is hopeful that city officials will review the existing ordinance on CCTV cameras in business establishments and perhaps come up with stricter provisions.

Pineda expressed frustration over the refusal of some business establishments to cooperate with the police in their investigation on some crime incidents.

He lamented that the community is quick to blame the police when a crime takes place, even criticizing them on social media for slow response or unsolved cases, but when public cooperation is requested, they refuse.

“Lagi na lang ang police ang bini-blame (it is always the police that are being blamed) pero tulad nung nangyari, halos lahat ayaw magbigay sa amin ng information (and like what had just happened, almost all of them do not want to give us the information we need),” said Supt. Pineda, referring to Monday afternoon’s gun-slay of a businessman.

He was referring to Arsenio Macahis, 55, who was gunned down by unidentified suspects while driving his white pick-up truck on a busy street in Purok 1, Barangay Batinguel.

The police chief said he ordered his men to determine the possible entry points up to the exit point of the suspects in the killing, so that they can obtain video footages from business establishments to help in the investigation.

However, Supt. Pineda said that it is very difficult for them to get the business establishments to cooperate.

“Dili lang mana karon lang nahitabo ang mga pinusilay unya maglisod gani mi ug hangyo (it’s not the first time that a shooting incident has occurred here, and we have a hard time requesting them)” for copies of video footages captured on their Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) systems, he said.

According to Pineda, he has asked Councilor Alan Gel Cordova to pass an ordinance that would require establishments to put up CCTVs “and at the same time “obligado sila maghatag ng kopya ng CCTV dire sa station” (they will be obliged to provide the police station with copies of CCTV footages.”

In other countries, law enforcement authorities can immediately secure copies of CCTV footages of a crime scene, and these are even shown on television news, he said.

Pineda admitted that business establishment owners who refuse to cooperate may be charged with obstruction of justice, but the process is lengthy that it deters the police from filing cases.

Cordova, a lawyer, promised to present the suggestion to the city council, the police chief said. (PNA)

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