Beaufort’s downtown now has extra eyes to aid the police department in deterring and solving crime.
The city spent $71,500 to install 14 cameras from Charles Street to Carteret Street, as well as Bay Street and Henry C. Chambers Waterfront Park.
After hearing success stories about Bluffton’s security cameras, Beaufort City Council decided in June to purchase the same system with accommodations tax and general fund money, City Manager Bill Prokop said.
Bluffton installed a 22-camera system in the historic district in 2015 after its Town Council identified public safety cameras as a top priority.
Beaufort’s cameras are now installed and recording the downtown area 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“It will be used as evidence as needed for patrol purposes,” Prokop said.
While no specific incident sparked the purchase, Prokop said he hopes the cameras will improve safety and solve any future crimes in the downtown area.
Over the last two years, there were 67 police reports filed at Waterfront Park, which includes the pavilion, children’s park, marina and parking lot, Sgt. Hope Able said. There were 187 reports taken on Bay Street from 2015-16.