Not In Our City!

By Joy Cooper Hallandale Beach Mayor

January 5, 2022

Hallandale Beach Uses Technology To Fight Crime

In my last article I started to address the changes being implemented in our Police Department. Ironically the ShotSpotter technology was triggered on December 28th, 2021 and December 29th, 2021.

On December 28th, 2021 the ShotSpotter alarmed patrol to shots being fired on Northeast 1st Avenue and along Northeast 5th Street. Patrols arrived at the scene and found multiple bullet casings. Two minutes later a car crash was witnessed at Pembroke Road and 1st Avenue. Witnesses reported a gray Charger at high speed and hit another car. The car fled and Hollywood Police pursued the car into Miami-Dade County. The car was stopped and was riddled with bullets. There were two suspects who were arrested and linked to the shooting. Hollywood Police were the arresting agencies and took over the investigation.

On December 29th, 2021, the alarm sent patrols to the underpass at I-95 and West Hallandale Beach Boulevard. While on route it was reported a white male was laying on the road. At the scene, the victim told officers that an unknown person shot into his vehicle hitting both of his arms. Since the underpass is the BSO's jurisdiction, the BSO took over the investigation.

While the last thing we needed was more shootings, now we know that this technology provides real time information when shots are being fired. It helps to fight crime and gets criminals off the street.

Technology to fight crime is not new to our city, we have implemented body worn cameras on all officers after a trial period. These cameras assist in so many ways. They obviously document interactions between the public and the officers. The recordings help to provide evidence when an arrest is made. The films also become a training tool. In November they even captured our officers’ saving men from a burning vehicle.

In addition to these technologies years ago we implemented cameras in many of our parks and municipal facilities. The ultimate goal was to have cameras throughout our City and have them linked to a main monitored hub at our new Fire Station. Regretfully with the changes in management, many new technologies and upgrades were delayed. We are now truly focused on fully implementing.

In 2021, the City Of Hallandale Beach Police Department had installed Automatic License Plate Recognition (ALPR) cameras at eleven of the largest traffic arteries in and out of the City to include: I-95 and West Pembroke Road (East), North Dixie Highway and Pembroke Road (South), Northeast 1st Avenue and Pembroke Road(North), North Federal Highway and Pembroke Road(South), Atlantic Shores Boulevard and Northeast 14th Avenue(North and South), 2500 East Hallandale Beach Boulevard (West), Ocean Drive/A1A (North), South Federal Highway and Countyline Road (North and South), Southeast 1st Avenue and Countyline(North) South Dixie Highway and Countyline Road (South) and I-95 and West Hallandale Beach Boulevard (East and West). These readers help us to target stolen vehicles and report tags that have been in crimes.

In 2022, the Hallandale Beach Police Department will expand the ALPR system and the Public Safety Camera (CCTV) system to an additional four ALPRs locations and an additional forty-nine replacement CCTVs at twelve new locations. The cameras will be strategically installed at the following locations along Foster Road and Federal Highway.

Residents need to know that their taxpayer dollars and a partnership with the CRA have been helping to ensure we have a State-of-the-art Police Department. We need to continue to equip our officers to fight crime within our City.

Tolls and training go hand in hand. There have been many focus groups around that country on modern day policing. I have been following this issue for awhile and I must say I cannot buy into all the rhetoric. We as a society need to realize that there is serious crime in our communities. We need to fight crime and not sugar coat it. Police are here to protect and serve. The super majority are great public servants. I have fielded so many calls about continued crime and the need for more presence and getting tougher not reducing or changing the way we police. With the proper tools, training and leadership in the department we can send the message “Not in our city!“

As residents we too need to be proactive. Please call and report crime. You may think it does not help but it truly does. The more reports and documentation we have provides much needed information to monitor and track criminal activity so that we can address the problems head on.

As always feel free to contact me anytime with your questions, concerns and ideas to make our City a great place to live, work and play! I am available by phone or text at: (954) 632-5700. E-mail me at: jcooper@cohb.org. Or visit my FB and website at: www.MayorJoyCooper.com