Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) is widely used by private residences, business and public buildings across the country. The idea behind these systems is to try and prevent crime and assist in solving crimes when they do occur.
While CCTV technology has improved over the years, it is far from foolproof. If it has been used in your case then you are well within your right to question its validity, and here’s why.
Identifications must be accurate
CCTV often plays a crucial role in identifying suspects and victims. A closeup image or video can be compelling. That being said, there are occasions when the identification of the alleged suspect is less than convincing at the time. For example, what if it was nighttime? What if the alleged perpetrator was wearing a hat or hood?
The age and quality of the equipment also come into play. Cheaper CCTV systems tend to provide more grainy footage. The same can be said if the system is older.
Why does this matter so much?
The burden of proof for conviction in criminal cases is beyond all reasonable doubt. If the prosecution is reliant on CCTV footage in the identification of a suspect, then it must be 100% accurate in terms of providing a clear picture of the accused as well as a timestamp.
Anything less than this casts doubt over the accuracy of the identification, which means that the beyond reasonable doubt standard cannot be reached at trial. If you are facing criminal charges, make sure you have legal guidance behind you to test the strength of the prosecution’s case.