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Clinic co-releases report evaluating the effectiveness of the City of San Francisco's Surveillance Camera Program

Type: Report
Year: 2009

Today the Samuelson Clinic co-released with CITRIS a comprehensive report evaluating the effectiveness of the City of San Francisco’s Community Safety Camera program. The report, commissioned by the City and co-authored by CITRIS-affiliated researchers Jennifer King (Samuelson Clinic Research Specialist), Former Clinic Director and iSchool Professor Deirdre Mulligan, and Public Policy Professor Steven Raphael, represents a seven-month comprehensive evaluation of the City’s public surveillance camera system. San Francisco’s Community Safety Camera Program launched in late 2005 with the dual goals of fighting crime and providing police investigators with a retroactive investigatory tool. The program placed over seventy non-monitored cameras in primarily high-crime areas throughout the City. The evaluation consists of a multi-disciplinary collaboration examining the program’s technical aspects, management and goals, and policy components, as well as a quasi-experimental statistical evaluation of crime reports in order to provide a comprehensive evaluation of the program’s effectiveness. The findings include a determination that while the program decreased property crime within the view of the cameras by twenty percent, other forms of crime, including violent crime, one of the primary targets of the program, were not affected.

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