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Public drunkenness, public fornication are top crimes for neighborhood surveillance system

What are the most common crimes and misdemeanors in Cuenca? According to the new video surveillance system monitored by Cuenca’s Citizen Security Council (CSC), they are public drunkenness, public love-making and graffiti.

The Cuenca ECU 911 call center.

The CSC which began operation in July with 181 cameras in parks and residential neighborhoods, has only spotted a handful of violent crimes and property break-ins in the early going. “Mostly, we see a lot of drunks and immoral acts and are surprised we have not caught more criminals but we believe that will change,” says Fernando Carpio, CSC director. “Our neighborhoods are experiencing more home robberies and our system is designed to stop that.”

The CSC, which shares cameras with Cuenca’s ECU-911 system through a “mirror arrangement”, has asked that it be allowed access to more of ECU-911’s 380 cameras and the request is being considered by the interior ministry. “We want to increase our role since our interest is protecting our own families and our neighborhoods,” Carpio says.

CSC members monitor the organization’s cameras 24 hours a day along with members of the city’s Citizens’ Guard.

Alexandra Altamirano, director of ECU-911, says she is pleased to share video monitoring duties with CSC but says she must follow interior ministry guidelines. “There are security rules that must be adhered to to assure that those doing the monitoring have been granted clearance by the government,” he says. “Obviously, we don’t want criminals watching the monitors and telling their friends when they can commit crimes.”

Another issue ECU-911 must consider in granting broadened surveillance access to CSC are new law enforcement rules issued September 2 by the interior ministry. As part of President Lenin Moreno’s “Crime Attack Ecuador” campaign, police have been ordered to concentrate on the most serious crimes, including violent assault, kidnappings and property break-ins.

The new policies affect the work of CSC, says Carpio. “Police are no longer being dispatched for drunkenness, immoral acts and graffiti and we understand the importance of focusing on serious crime,” he says. “We are disappointed, of course, and we will continue to report all crimes.”

22 thoughts on “Public drunkenness, public fornication are top crimes for neighborhood surveillance system

    1. “Police are no longer being dispatched for drunkenness, immoral acts and graffiti.”
      It’s not on anybody’s list of priorities. It sucks.

      1. Personally, I’m glad the emphasis is on murder, rape and assault. Let the gringo online bitch brigade go after the taggers and public fornicators.

  1. The article reports: “Police are no longer being dispatched for … graffiti.”

    As we have seen elsewhere, failure of police to respond to crime leads to private justice. It’s just a matter of time before some property owners decide to take matters into their own hands.

  2. I lean toward what Martha says, in that there certainly appears to be a lot of property vandalism and that these kids hang around their territory marking – are the local police that busy that they cannot roll support to those properties. Would not a more attractive (and respectful) community not help reduce other petty crimes? And would not a more visible policing of the overall community also be a deterrent to other crimes? The reports seem to indicate, above, that there are NOT a lot of other crimes being recorded, and there is certainly a LOT of tagging going on…

    1. How about their rampant use of opioids? Mass shootings? Obesity? Asylum seeker cruelty? Unequal taxation? Exploitation of weaker countries? Campaign fraud? Carbon footprint… ………………………………..
      Frankly, I prefer the graffiti and the love-making. (More like my memories of Woodstock.) Admittedly, much of both are very inexpertly done (just like at Woodstock). If the city of Cuenca agreed to it, I would be out there with paint remover and/or paint brush (for the graffiti, not the lover makers.)

      1. Really? “How about their rampant use of opioids?” someone is watching too much USA TV. They are the hardest to get here. And before you say it, Tramadol is not a opoid by any sense. I’ve been here 9 months and have serious internal injuries. I the bupe patch and take ketorolac. But, you don’t just get morphine and oxy’s here without major drama and then finding pharmacy that even stocks them is another story. When I got here I tried in quito and then here. But, then I found the Transtec patch and I’m no longer addicted and my pain is managed so I’m glad it turned out like that. I get Ketorolac over the counter for rescue doses..

        Anyway, those reckless comments have left millions even cancer patients in the states struggling to get their medications.

        1. Its so sad. 80 year olds standing in 90F and humidity through the roof humidity twice a month to get their pain meds? UNTHINKABLE cruel and unusual treatment of the elderly, others just suffer or go into nursing homes where they get the meds delivered but the addicted nurses often take them and leave the patient to suffer the pain and the withdraw. SMH People who need them can’t have them because people who don’t abuse them? Who was it that created the addiction crises? oh yeah, pharmaceutical companies and dr’s. Who is paying the price? those who need them.

      2. The City has agreed. Join the Keep Cuenca Beautiful Plan, not to remove the creative wall murals, but rather the disfiguring vandalism of tagging. There is a huge difference between the two. And yes. The police should keep an eye out. The fury and frustration of these mostly young taggers could easily turn into more violent crimes.

        Read a men’s comments below.

      3. Overpopulation is pretty much on the top of my list. Sex in the streets is no biggie except for the Puritans who want us all to follow their rules for our own good naturally. No abortions and no protection leads to a lot of unwanted children which is tough on society all around…

          1. Nope, I’m all for sex I just don’t like the unwanted children that are the consequence of anti sex policies…

  3. Failure to respond just allows the perpetrators a free pass to continue their bad behavior. If the police do nothing to curb the problem, eventually a frustrated public will take matters into their own hands.

  4. obviously, police have priorities. a home robbery or serious assault will get priority over graffiti … but police should attend for graffiti if there is nothing more serious at the time. as been stated, if you turn a blind eye or camera then the problem will multiply.

    1. Join the Keep Cuenca Beautiful FB Group. We’re organizing those painting crews as you speak. You too can help to be part of the solution!
      I have a brush with your name on it!

    2. I really don’t think gringos are to blame for the graffiti, do you? Most of us do contribute positively to this city in many ways, so graffiti needs to be corrected by the Cuencanos who allow it to happen.

      1. Oh, so the Cuencanos are to blane? Really? All of them? And no gringos? How about in NYC citizens? Are they to blame for their graffiti because they live there? What is it about being from an area that makes them culpable and makes someone who moves there from somewhere else any less so? Please.

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