The Streator Police Department is pooling resources in an effort to solve or deter crimes.
The department is asking businesses or residents with external surveillance cameras to register into an optional database.
Police Chief Kurt Pastirik said having a database of addresses with external surveillance cameras will allow officers to ask those residents for video footage if a crime happens in their area. It would then be up to the resident whether they wish to provide the videos.
Absent a court order, the registrant may deny access to the video or video system, according to the registration form.
The department will keep information provided by the registrant confidential and not disclose information to third parties, except as reasonably necessary to fulfill lawful responsibility or in accordance with law enforcement practices. according to its registration form.
"This will really help us out in the event of a serious crime," Pastirik said. "We can go back to the resident and ask if they are OK if we take a look at their video.
"This gives us an opportunity to cover more ground throughout the city," the chief said.
At no time will the police department have direct access to a resident's cameras, according to the registration form. The registration form will serve as a database with contact information for police to use only if necessary, Pastirik said.
Anyone participating can opt out of the database at any time.
Pastirik said other communities have had success with a similar registration system, including Bloomington.
Go online to ci.streator.il.us/your_government/city_departments/security_camera_registration.php to complete registration.
For more information on the registration, call 815-672-3111 or go to the Streator Police Department's Facebook page.