A new program allows residents and business owners to voluntarily register their privately-owned video security camera systems with the Rockville City Police Department, giving police a valuable tool for investigating crime in the community.

Private residents are increasingly using video security systems to deter crime and capture evidence if a crime is committed, and video has proven to be one of the best methods for police to identify, apprehend and convict criminals.

Through the RockView security camera registration program, home or business owners use an online form to submit the address of a property where a security camera is in use. This information provides city police a way to quickly identify security cameras that may have captured criminal activity when a crime is reported nearby.

“One of the most effective ways to solve crimes is through evidence captured on video security cameras,” said Maj. Bob Rappoport, who commands the city police department’s Special Operations Bureau. “Through the RockView program, residents can play a proactive role in keeping their neighborhoods safe.”

When police identify a registered camera located near a reported crime, they will contact the camera owner and ask if the owner would examine their security video for potential leads in the investigation. The owner may accept or deny the request for assistance. If the owner accepts, and their camera captured pertinent information, police will arrange a convenient way to retrieve the information. The program is 100 percent voluntary and community members can opt-out at any time.

Information provided to the RCPD about camera systems will be for official police use only. Owners’ personal information will not be distributed except as required by law or court order. Information submitted may be disclosed if requested per the Maryland Public Information Act.

For more information, and to register a camera, visit www.rockvillemd.gov/securitycamera.