Aberdeen Police are thanking local merchants and business owners for investments in video surveillance after a couple of cases were solved recently because the criminals didn’t know they were on camera.

Chief Steve Shumate explained recently, “We have had some great successes of recent with video surveillance equipment that businesses and citizens have had. Just in the past month, just a few off the top of my head; the Liberty Gas Station, and then we had another one the arson just the other day. [An] individual came into town and thought he would try to torch the Morck but we had a nearby business that caught him on camera.”

The arson suspect was found by police at the library just a few blocks away, still smelling of smoke.

At the Liberty Gas Station, their surveillance system notified the owners overnight. They watched the person walking around in their store as they spoke with 911 operators, and were able to tip off responding officers when they watched him try to hide in the suspended ceiling.

Before such widespread access to home surveillance store owners had to purchase expensive, proprietary, systems that often times only provided grainy footage at best. Today’s systems are simple, easy to install, use, and in many cases give officers access to vital investigative information.