And the assumption is they work, but as one man found out, sometimes they don't.
He was beaten up under a security camera that, it turns out, hasn't worked for a decade.
On a pole there is a security camera, surveying all who come and go at the municipal parking lot in Astoria.
The incident took place in a parking lot that sits behind just a row of typical stores along 31st St. in Astoria, Queens.
That's what Rosario DiMarco thought four nights before Christmas. That's when he said he was beaten with a stick.
Two men jumped him near his parked car, but to add insult to injury, Rosario, who has owned a store there on 31st for 25 years, was upset to learn the security camera did not work.
City Council member Peter Vallone's office is in the area.
"It got stuck in beaurocratic hell. It took a week and a half for the police department to find out from the DOT who owns the camera," he said.
That was after Vallone interceede.
"And then their answer was, we'll take it down immediately. No! How about we fix it immediately so that next time we can catch people who assault one of our beloved community members," adds Vallone.
The camera, DOT officials say, has not worked since 2002.
Most of their cameras now monitor traffic conditions. And the police department councilman Vallone reveals, handles most of the security cameras.
Still Rosario would like to see a new camera.
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