Portola Valley surveys residents on license-plate cameras

The camera would photograph the license plate of every vehicle entering or leaving town

The town of Portola Valley is using an online survey to gather community opinion on the use of cameras that photograph the license plate of every vehicle entering or leaving the town.

In the wake of two home-invasion robberies by armed gunmen, one in mid-June and the other in mid-October, the Town Council is hosting a community discussion on public safety at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 9, in the Community Hall at 765 Portola Road.

License-plate cameras may have been helpful to authorities investigating these robberies, but the cameras are not cheap to install and maintain, and there are still questions about their effectiveness, Town Manager Jeremy Dennis said recently.

In past discussions, the Portola Valley council opted for alternatives such as increased patrols.

To take the survey, click here to log in as a resident or to sign up for an account. The survey will close on Sunday, Nov. 6.

The crime rate in Portola Valley is higher this year than it was in 2015 around this time, but lower than it was in 2014, officials have said.

Home-invasion robberies are random and "very rare" in Portola Valley, Detective Salvador Zuno of the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office said after the October incident.


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9 people like this
Posted by CitizenSane
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Oct 27, 2016 at 9:47 pm

Automated License Plate Readers (ALPRs) have successfully been used in the prosecution of criminals. The recent violent home invasion attack at night had perpetrators holding guns to family member's heads, and threatening the child. The ALPR can be used to capture the vehicle plate from the very few exits from the town in the timeframe of the crime. Clearly these ALPR systems are not free, but grants may be available, and the elected town council must consider at what price is it worth not having families held at gunpoint while being asked for locations of safes?

Posted by Name hidden
a resident of Atherton: West of Alameda

on Oct 28, 2016 at 7:13 am

Due to repeated violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are automatically removed. Why?

6 people like this
Posted by jackrabbit
a resident of Portola Valley: Westridge
on Oct 28, 2016 at 2:49 pm

Echo 'CitizenSane's comments exactly.
As one who has law enforcement family members, the benefits of ALPRs is without question. The costs can be shared with grants and other government financial assistance programs available. This a true state of the art apprehension and crime deterrent tool.

Like this comment
Posted by Michael G. Stogner
a resident of another community
on Nov 1, 2016 at 8:21 am

The Bad Guys either remove, cover or swap plates before driving into your town.

Like this comment
Posted by Keep PV SAFE !
a resident of Portola Valley: Central Portola Valley
on Aug 4, 2017 at 10:51 pm

UPDATE TO ALL NON RESIDENTS: cameras will be up by the end of summer. No more thugs allowed! Strict crackdown on ALL CRIME. There is no where to hide, we will get your license plate and track you down.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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