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Town eyes installing video cameras in parking lots

Riverhead Town agreed to pay $350,000 to settle

Riverhead Town agreed to pay $350,000 to settle a federal lawsuit filed in 1996 by Anthony Wayne Smith, who charged that he was falsely arrested at a bus stop, that two police officers used unreasonable force in his arrest, and that he was remanded for psychiatric testing without cause. (March 22, 2011) Credit: Erin Geismar

The Riverhead Town board is looking into the possibility of installing video cameras in municipal parking lots in the downtown Riverhead business district, after getting a request for them from members of the Business Improvement District.

Supervisor Sean Walter said the town board is discussing the proposal, and that current plans call for cameras which could be monitored by town police at their headquarters, but which more likely would record activity as a way of tracking down people who might break into a car or commit similar crimes.

Last month, following a fatal nighttime hit-and-run and the unrelated robbery of two tourists, the town added a second uniformed police officer to the foot patrol of the downtown business district.

The town police had had one officer on foot patrol 16 hours a day for the past decade.

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