Additional surveillance cameras installed on Butler’s campus

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Security around the Butler University campus is getting tighter just in time for the upcoming semester.

However, that doesn’t mean Butler Police Department squad cars will be patrolling around or extra officers will be on foot. Instead, several extra sets of eyes will be peeking over people’s shoulders thanks to new surveillance cameras.

Cruising around the Butler Campus, it doesn’t take long to know that someone is always watching.

“As soon as you come in, there’s a camera,” said Bill Weber, Deputy Chief of Butler University PD, as he gave 24-Hour News 8 a tour of the campus in his squad car.

“Each one of those has four cameras and it covers this whole lot,” he said pointing towards cameras near several athletic fields.

From parking lots to trails, about 70 surveillance cameras are on the lookout, and that number continues to climb.

Three more cameras were installed Wednesday, one going near the intersection of West Hampton Drive and Haughey Avenue. The area is also known as “Greek Row” with several fraternity and sorority houses lining the streets.

“It’s just part of a plan to increase safety on campus,” said Deputy Chief Weber.

“I think the more the better,” added parent Julie Rahn who was touring the campus with her family.

She was glad to hear more cameras were being installed, especially since her daughter Megan plans to spend four years at Butler.

“I think anytime your child leaves the house, you want to make sure that they’re going to be secure and safe,” she said.

“Right now I’m trying to grab real estate in terms grabbing large views,” said Deputy Chief Weber. “Then as our camera plan progresses, we will dial down farther and farther to get a narrower view of the things we want to see on campus.”

But, no matter how many cameras are set up, Butler police know that new technology shouldn’t be all that keeps an eye out on campus.

“Everybody loves to have that nosey neighbor because they’re always there watching your property,” he said. “Well we want the students, they help. Faculty staff helps. These cameras help.”

Butler PD can watch the cameras in real time. But since the department doesn’t have the staffing to monitor them 24/7, Deputy Chief Weber said staff will mainly review what the cameras witnessed, like a suspicious vehicle or assault.

And with new trails and bike paths being added around the campus, Deputy Chief Weber said people should expect to see even more cameras soon.

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