After an investigation by the San Francisco Chronicle revealed that, harrowingly, more than two thirds of the cameras on BART trains were fake, the Bay Area transit agency has reportedly replaced those bogus cameras with real ones.
According to a report in today’s Chronicle:
Camera housing units on nearly 500 cars had been empty shells with only blinking red lights installed in the late 1990s and early 2000s as decoys to deter vandalism, officials said.
“The installation of new digital cameras demonstrates our commitment to public safety,” BART Police Chief Carlos Rojas said in a statement. “Theses cameras will be an effective tool for solving crimes that occur on the BART system by helping investigators identify suspects. The devices will also serve as a deterrent to prevent some crimes from ever occurring in the first place.”
Four digital cameras will be on each train. The installation of new cameras came to $1.42 million.
The lack of camera footage proved troublesome after recent criminal activity on trains—including the shooting death of 19-year-old Antioch resident Carlos Misael Funez-Romero, as well as a Great Train Robbery-esque hold up of an entire train in April.