Oregon’s largest transit agency will use a $1.9 million federal grant to install closed-circuit cameras at nine more light-rail stations, insisting the technology makes people think twice before robbing and assaulting riders, The Oregonian reports. The American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon isn’t convinced. “Research very clearly shows that security cameras don’t deter crime,” said the ACLU’s David Fidanque. “If they did, we’d have no robberies of banks and convenience stores.” Even with a 39 percent jump in reported crimes on one line, overall crime on the system dropped 19 percent in 2009.
Transit Police Commander Vince Jarmar said the cameras’ role in further reducing crime “shouldn’t be understated.” This week, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority said nearly half of the New York City subway system’s 4,313 security cameras don’t work, largely because of software and maintenance problems.