The city had been looking to expand its camera network as part of a larger crime-fighting plan. The city is planning to install 250 additional cameras by December, Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said.
“Video surveillance cameras have proven to be an effective tool for law enforcement officers in apprehending criminal offenders,” the resolution states, adding that the city has seen a rise in violent crime that has spilled over into the city’s parks and recreation facilities.
Just a few days before Janness’ death, police responded to the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Ja’kari Dillard at Anderson Pool, a city-owned pool in the Dixie Hills neighborhood in northwest Atlanta. Police have secured a murder warrant for a suspect in that case.
Heather Johnson, the cousin of Janness’ girlfriend, said having more cameras can be helpful, as long as they are properly maintained over the years.
“Sure, put the cameras in, but follow up,” Johnson said Wednesday. “If they aren’t working in five years, what’s the point?”
Councilwoman Joyce Sheperd, who sponsored the resolution, said a large percentage of the city’s parks don’t have security cameras.
“I’m not saying we need cameras in every park. But what I’m asking (APD) to do is, do an assessment of the parks where we know categorically that there may be some calls for service, may be some crime,” Sheperd said.
The City Council passed an ordinance earlier this year looking into whether the city could re-hire retired police officers to patrol the city’s parks.
APD Deputy Chief Charles Hampton said earlier this month that investigators solve numerous cases without the help of technology.
“We have the talent and we will bring justice in this case,” he said.