Home security system aids in arrests in South Bethany

Date Published: 
December 1, 2017

South Bethany Police Chief Troy Crowson swears he isn’t trying to sell anything. But he was visibly impressed with a home-security system that recently assisted with preventing a possible crime in South Bethany.

Recently, while outside of Delaware, a woman was able to use live security footage to see strangers approaching her South Bethany house — and tell them to leave.

On Nov. 15, around dusk, Crowson said, two black men approached a house on New Castle Drive. They had not been invited, and their presence triggered the outdoor security camera to begin filming. The system sent live footage to the property owner’s cell phone, and she could broadcast her voice back to the outdoor system.

“She made contact with them via her security system, advising them to leave her residence,” according to the police.

As they left, she called the SBPD, who immediately initiated a traffic stop on a blue-gray Kia leaving that road with four occupants inside. Located in the car were a Walther P22 .22 caliber handgun (reported stolen from the Dover area), more than 30 grams of suspected marijuana and several items of suspected drug paraphernalia.

A 17-year-old juvenile tried to flee the scene, police said, but he was caught and placed under arrest. The juvenile was charged with two felonies (carrying a concealed deadly weapon and receiving a stolen firearm), plus misdemeanors of criminal impersonation, resisting arrest, possession of marijuana with aggravating factor, criminal mischief and disorderly conduct. He was processed and released to the custody of his mother.

Also during the traffic stop, Anijah Waples, 18, of Rehoboth Beach was found to have warrants and was placed under arrest. After video-phoning with a judge though the SBPD, she was released. At the time, she was not charged with any counts relating to the traffic stop.

Investigation of the incident was ongoing this week, as it may relate to other crimes, Crowson said.

Why were the suspects in town?

“That’s still under investigation,” he said. “There will be other arrests made from that.”

Meanwhile, he said he was were impressed with the Ring security system’s “phenomenal” video quality, which allowed police officers to see the vehicle travel down the street, even in low-sunlight.

He said the South Bethany Police Department had also been sent a free system to test.

“Not only does it give you the ability to see people who approach your [house] and talk to them,” but it also has “great audio and video quality,” Crowson said. “I’m very impressed with this product.”