This map shows the locations of surveillance cameras that San Diego Police officers have access to from their squad cars as part of Operation Secure San Diego

Almost as interesting as the locations where law enforcement have access to cameras, is this inconsistency regarding procedures for accessing the camera feeds.

On their website the San Diego Police Department states:

"We are very cognizant of the impact this may have on privacy issues and the public’s perception of being on video. The SDPD can assure you that we have procedures in place that allow the viewing only when summoned to the Hotel Indigo (or any additional partner) for a service call."

But when I filed a public records request for this location data as well as the procedures surrounding viewing of these cameras I was told:

"There are no responsive documents for your request to any copies of procedures regarding viewing these camera feeds. Operation Secure San Diego is still in the development stages. There are no procedures at this time."

There may be a legitimate law enforcement need for access to these cameras, but the police department should institute the procedures they claim are already in place to ensure these camera feeds are only viewed for law enforcement use when a crime has been reported and so that the public knows when they are being watched via camera by law enforcement officers. 

Here is the San Diego Police Department’s response and the location data.

Jeff Hammett

jeff@jeffhammett.com