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Surveillance-video gap normal: association

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 29/8/2013 (2115 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

A gap in surveillance video when there was no movement during the 34 hours Brian Sinclair waited for treatment at the Health Sciences Centre is normal, a security industry association spokesman says.

"It's a common practice of video recording systems to look at events," said Jean-Franßois Champagne, executive director of the Canadian Security Association in Markham, Ont.

"In the absence of movement, there's nothing to look at or report," he said.

The inquest looking into Sinclair's 2008 death was told of the gap during testimony Tuesday morning, catching a seasoned police detective and HSC officials off guard as it was the first time in five years it had been raised.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 29/8/2013 (2115 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

A gap in surveillance video when there was no movement during the 34 hours Brian Sinclair waited for treatment at the Health Sciences Centre is normal, a security industry association spokesman says.

"It's a common practice of video recording systems to look at events," said Jean-Franßois Champagne, executive director of the Canadian Security Association in Markham, Ont.

"In the absence of movement, there's nothing to look at or report," he said.

The inquest looking into Sinclair's 2008 death was told of the gap during testimony Tuesday morning, catching a seasoned police detective and HSC officials off guard as it was the first time in five years it had been raised.

The five-minute, seven-second gap in surveillance video was pointed out by Sinclair family lawyer Vilko Zbogar to Winnipeg police Det.-Sgt. John O'Donovan, who led a year-long criminal investigation into Sinclair's death. No charges were laid.

O'Donovan, who testified he spent about 500 hours watching the security video of Sinclair at the HSC, told the inquest he had not noticed the gap until Zbogar raised it.

The director of security at HSC told the inquest the gap was not deliberate, but a normal function of the cameras. "If the camera doesn't sense any motion, it stops recording," security director Norman Schatz testified.

The HSC system "recording on event" is standard practice, Champagne said Thursday.

Recorded video surveillance information is stored on computer-system hard drives, he said. Using up storage space to record information that is not usable doesn't make sense, said Champagne.

"Can you imagine someone looking at 16 different screens?" Many facilities like the HSC have several cameras doing surveillance, he said. Monitoring video recordings of nothing happening takes up valuable time and hard-drive space, Champagne said.

"On-event recording is a big, big component of keeping hard-drive space to a reasonable amount," he said.

Schatz told reporters earlier the HSC can't alter its video surveillance system.

"These are proprietary systems. You can't even turn them off. All we can do is control what they are looking at."

 

— Bruce Owen

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