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CCTV fails when it might be inconvenient to Police.

By johnboy - 3 August 2005 85

Following on from the highly controversial subject of Saturday morning’s potentially fatal high speed non-pursuit through the de-facto pedestrian area that is the civic bus interchange (which has left 21 year old Clea Rose fighting for her life in hospital), comes the peculiar news that all three of the police cameras which could have recorded the potentially fatal incident had a “technical issue” which no-one cares to give us details on. A technical issue which was not so grave that it couldn’t be easily remedied but which will prevent anyone ever knowing what actually hapenned.

Anyone else thinking a number of coincidences begin to take on a certain aroma?

Time for a new body independent body to supervise CCTV in Canberra. To protect the police as much as to protect the citizenry from them.

UPDATED: The Canberra Times has coverage here. It would appear all footage from the cameras is meant to be recorded to hard drive but the police are claiming that this stopped hapenning on 27 July and no-one noticed. I’m confident at least 50 RiotACT readers, myself included, could in a few hours add parity checking to the system so that when recording stops alarm bells ring. So we’ll be seeing resignations from those responsible for the cameras will we?

The Legislative Assembly’s Opposition spokesman on police matters Steve Pratt questioned whether there had been a technical fault with the CCTV recordings, or if the police were simply trying to cover up what had happened.

Frankly I think some of you owe ORL and other witnesses an apology, but that’s just my opinion.

FURTHER UPDATE: ABC Online is reporting the Chief Minister’s “grave concerns” on this issue. He has ordered a review. One imagines the review will ask if these blackouts only occur at times convenient to the police, or, if they are more widespread, why this is the first time it has been mentioned.

YET ANOTHER UPDATE: The AFP have seen fit to put their media release online with a rebuke for members of the public who have spoken to the media but not to them, and the important bit buried in the final paragraph.

AND FINALLY: The Pratt asks the wrong questions in this media release.

What’s Your opinion?

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85 Responses to
CCTV fails when it might be inconvenient to Police.
TAD 12:35 pm 04 Aug 05

What a load of crap.

ACT Govt own and maintain the cameras. Police monitor them from City Station front office. They went down a couple of days earlier. Police reported, Govt just had not fixed them.

Tool 12:34 pm 04 Aug 05


Pick and choose witnesses hey? If only it were so simple, your vast knowledge of court proceedings astounds me, clearly here in Canberra we only introduce evidence that is prejudicial, anything to suggest otherwise is destroyed, oh and the defence cannot investigate either!

innocentbystander 12:16 pm 04 Aug 05

Who is responsible for the maintenance of the CCTV surveillance cameras in Civic?

KandyA 11:49 am 04 Aug 05

Big Brother is currently experiencing technical difficulties, please continue to bemoan your loss of civil liberties and entertain various conspiracy theories whilst these matters are rectified.

Thumper 11:09 am 04 Aug 05

I meant ‘grave concerns’. This old keyboard has a tendency to conveniently miss letters.

Well, thats my excuse anyway.

bloodnut 11:02 am 04 Aug 05

as they say

“Police are especially keen to see any footage that might have been captured on mobile phones or video cameras. “

so it may be confiscated and destroyed

Thumper 10:12 am 04 Aug 05

I always worry when the Comrade brings out his ‘gave concerns’ speech.

You just know he’s not going to do anything about it.

johnboy 8:55 am 04 Aug 05

Yes but as it’s the same organisation picking and choosing its witnesses as is under suspicion, and the same one which had unspecified “technical issues” with the cameras that’s hardly reassuring to the public now is it Tool?

If the cameras just weren’t recording then again they should have said so, but again we’re being kept in the dark and being fed an unspecified but pungent substance.

Spectra 8:49 am 04 Aug 05

I have a strong suspicion that the “Technical Issue” to which they refer is that very few, if any, of the CCTV cameras in civic actually record. This isn’t the first time I’ve come across this – one of my friends had an expensive pair of sunnies nicked off the counter in the police station by a druggie who was reporting in for bail conditions or something. The police said there was little they could do because there was “no evidence”.
“What about those two cameras?” queried my friend.
“Oh, they don’t record” he was told.
Bloody useful.

Tool 8:41 am 04 Aug 05

Um people, we have an area full of witnesses, do you think no camera fooatge is going to change anything?

Maelinar 8:35 am 04 Aug 05


Ralph 7:35 am 04 Aug 05

What a coincidence.

terubo 10:43 pm 03 Aug 05

One camera with a technical issue – vaguely credible.
Two – getting very sus.
Three – utter hogwash. Treating us like dopes.

johnboy 10:23 pm 03 Aug 05

Well they would be able to see the footage if something hadn’t hapenned to it.

Samuel Gordon-Stewar 10:18 pm 03 Aug 05

That is odd, I was under the impression that the police and associated minister would be able to see the footage and nobody else would…might have been my imagination though…

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