UK: Police apologizes for CCTVs

UK: Police apologizes for CCTVs


A police force apologised over a controversial CCTV scheme which saw more than 200 surveillance cameras installed in two largely Muslim neighbourhoods.

West Midland Police Chief Constable Chris Sims said he was "deeply sorry" that his force got the balance between counter-terrorism and excessive intrusion into people's lives "so wrong".

The cameras, some of which were hidden, sparked anger from civil liberties campaigners and residents in Sparkbrook and Washwood Heath in Birmingham, where they were predominantly installed.

Mr Sims said there were "serious shortcomings" in the force's management of the scheme, named Project Champion.

"I am sorry that we got such an important issue so wrong and deeply sorry that it has had such a negative impact on our communities," he said.

"My real regret is that Project Champion has undermined the strong relationships that exist between West Midlands Police and our communities that have been built up over many years.