Posts Tagged ‘Video’

Video Aids Law Enforcement in UK

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

970702_13970894-1024x678 Video Aids Law Enforcement in UKMany cities across the globe are installing CCTV systems. Digital closed circuit television systems aid law enforcement by catching crimes on camera. Police in turn review that camera recording and seek out the criminals.

In the UK, riots are breaking out and what the instigators do not realize is that London is one of the most wired up cities on the planet. Similar to Denver, Colorado, London has closed circuit television cameras all over and has been recording many of the riots that have recently broke out.

The police then scan 30 images per second looking for the best on that shows that may be responsible for starting that particular riot. The image or picture is then posted on the Internet, broadcast on television and even placed in the newspapers. This is helping solve the riots and satisfy the citizens that something is being done to keep their streets safe.

Somewhere in London there is a huge computer that stores hundreds of thousands if not millions of gigabytes of digital video footage. Computer interface aids the investigators in discovering details about crimes committed on London streets.

Some say that here in the United States where CCTV systems are also being used are in violation of our constitutional rights. Rather than get sidetracked on our right to privacy, litigators use CCTV footage to solve crime not invade your privacy. Any time you are outside of your home, you may be recorded on video. There are cameras in shopping centers, gas stations, party stores, banks and even many homes.

As a video forensic expert, I am asked to review footage that was recorded on these CCTV systems and export frames from the video and create and clarify images, prove authenticity and help courts better understand the digital video recording process and use of video as evidence.

It’s rare but I have even experienced video evidence that was altered by someone who was trying to beat the system. Many people do get away with evidence tampering and forensic experts can aid with authenticating evidence so the litigators can move on with their process.

One of the biggest mistakes forensic experts make it making their reports and testimony too complicated for the courts to understand. CCTV systems are complicated machinery and computer systems. It is not necessary to over complicate reports and testimony but rather make their opinions available in practical down to earth easy to understand English (or whatever language you are speaking).

Simply put, the world is rapidly changing and technology has made a grand entrance into the court room. Forensic experts help litigators understand the relevancy of media and other technical evidence while keeping their opinions simple and easy to understand.

We are all adjusting to technology and learning how to accept this technology and its ability to help law enforcement keep our streets safe.

Article I helped with in Toronto Canada

Noise Reduction for Video: Sound Clarification

Friday, October 8th, 2010

3692124539_78e9814c90_b Noise Reduction for Video: Sound ClarificationThe first step when restoring audio on a video recording is to remove background noise. More often than not, a recording in need of sound clarification or restoration has background noise covering the sounds that are desired to be heard. Noise reduction is the process of reducing and often eliminating that unwanted background sound from a video recording. Sound like wind, motors, lawnmowers, electronic hums and buzzes and other sounds may be louder than the spoken word and cover that speech so it is not audible.

Once the background noise is removed, the desired spoken words can be heard, the video recording is improved and the video recording will provide more forensic support. There are many levels of clarification acceptance. Some of the time the recording needs to be clarified so a jury can hear it. Other times the recording may only need to be audible to a transcriptionist or court reporter. Then, once the transcription is created, the audio forensic expert can go back, listen to the clarified recording comparing to the transcript and correcting any discrepancies using the expert’s critical listening skills.

The recording can then be certified by the forensic expert and an affidavit created as to the genuineness of the transcript for the legal proceeding. That way, if the audio recorded evidence is difficult to hear in a court room, the audio expert not only certifies the audio recorded evidence but can also testify on its accuracy.

This is a good example of a strategy between lawyers and expert witnesses. It is the expert witness’s job to suggest strategies to lawyers, public defenders, police and other government agencies that retain the expert witness. The lawyer will have difficulty and not represent the client to the best of their ability if they do not understand the audio forensic process and retain an audio forensic expert. The audio forensic expert of course cannot develop a strategy without a lawyer who is licensed to present the law case in the court room.

Before beginning your case that includes audio evidence, consult with a qualified audio forensic expert.

photo credit: Digidesign Icon Faders via photopin (license)

Video Forensic Expert Edward J Primeau Curriculum Vitae


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