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CMPD's newest crime fighting tool is an effort to crack down on its recent spike in violent crime. WBTV was given exclusive access to the top secret room.
Calling it their real time crime center, CMPD says it will be used primarily to crack down on armed robberies and homicide by gathering background information on suspects, crime scenes and similar crimes in well, real time.
Every one of the dozen or so large screens inside the room are trained on a street corner, interstate -- even a parking lot.
Deputy Chief Harold Medlock, who has overseen the launch of the center said it's about making good use of technology already in place.
"It's going to do nothing but strengthen our ability to anticipate crime sprees, anticipate issue and then also respond more quickly in catching the people that are doing the criminal activity out there," he said.
As our cameras captured exclusive access to their newest crime fighting tool, Medlock couldn't help but tout how it's already helping officers on the street.
"One of the detectives here was monitoring the radio as well and said that vehicle just passed one of our license plate readers, it's heading in bound on South Tryon Street," he recalled.
It's that immediate, according to Medlock who told WBTV they are using every resource from license plate readers to the shot spotter system to monitoring police radios to see if they can spot a suspect on the move.
And before you go thinking this is might be a tad too much on the Big Brother side of things -- Medlock quickly clarified what their focus is.
"You can't see what anybody necessarily looks like and it's not about identifying people it's about identifying activity," he said.
Medlock also told WBTV the cameras are not powerful enough to see anyone's face but rather what their doing.
"It's the activity and the clothing description that then gets our officers in to make that physical connection with that person and make that arrest," he said.
The cameras are combination of both CMPD's and the city department of transportation network. All together, they have the ability to see activity from 600 hundred different cameras city-wide.