The City of Albuquerque District Attorney’s office announced a new program to prevent and reduce crime — SCAN, or Security Camera Analytic Network. The idea is to encourage homes and businesses to register their cameras and join the security camera map.

Every day in Albuquerque, we hear about crime, and it is often hard for investigators to pinpoint who was involved and what happened.

Investigators try to utilize security cameras located near the area, hoping to get any information they can by obtaining relevant videos of the crime.

While some believe that the proposed security camera network will reduce Albuquerque’s high crime rate, a more effective approach would be to hire more police officers.

Under the new initiative, SCAN would help police track a collection of videos available around an area that involved suspects and could provide more information about the crime or possibly identify an escape path.

The process requires homeowners and businesses to register the camera online by answering some simple questions.

This may sound like a good idea to reduce crime — setting up a network of cameras — but focusing on hiring more police on the streets of our city instead could be a more effective solution to prevent or reduce crime closely.

We need to proactively take care of the crime problem in Albuquerque by having the police physically do something about crime and criminals without just depending on watching crime happen through a camera lens.

Cameras are not the most effective way to deal with the crime situation in Albuquerque.

“Public safety is about the whole community uniting against crime,” Mayor Berry said in a public announcement about the project.

However, words alone won’t help solve crime, and that is what has gotten us into trouble, with New Mexico leading the nation in property crime, according to a report by the FBI.

Every time I am driving to school or work, I rarely ever see police on the streets, where they are desperately needed. Crime in Albuquerque has gotten way out of control. The mayor and City Council are not doing enough about crime and are letting the problem get out of hand.

With robberies, thefts, rapes and other violent crimes, our city is top of the list for many types of criminal activities. We never hear about the good side of Albuquerque, just the negative side — Albuquerque, the city of crime.

Watching a suspect on your home security camera could also be risky and dangerous, because police might not get to your house in time to address the situation. Having more police visible would do more to prevent crime than more cameras would.

We need to fix the situation in a smart way and put more police on the streets to reduce crime and not just rely on an army of security cameras.

Ludella Awad is a freelance reporter at the Daily Lobo. The views in this column are her own. She can be contacted at or on Twitter @LudellaAwad.