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One Year After Pitt Student's Murder, More Security Cameras Are Installed In Oakland

Kathleen J. Davis
90.5 WESA
A livestream of the newly-installed cameras in Oakland on Tuesday, August 28, 2018.

Sixty surveillance cameras have been installed in Oakland around the University of Pittsburgh campus and residential areas. The cameras are in part a response to the murder last year of Pitt student Alina Sheyket in her Oakland apartment, at the hands of her estranged ex-boyfriend.

Security camera footage from a restaurant helped trace the movements of Matthew Darby, leading police to charge him with the crime. 

"Any improvement in security measures spawned by Alina's memory is certainly a welcomed event," said Bob DelGreco, the Sheyket family's attorney.

This recent batch of cameras brings the total Allegheny County to about 450. Ken Truver, police chief of Castle Shannon, said county-wide, increased security cameras have been instrumental in solving crime.

"To have this technology to supplement traditional investigative techniques helps speed up an investigation," Truver said. "And what our hope is that [criminals] know the cameras are out there and [they'll] go somewhere else."

County District Attorney Stephen Zappala said he believes the Oakland cameras will deter violent crimes, such as hit-and-runs. Six of the new cameras contain license plate recognition capabilities.

Three dozen security cameras were installed in the South Side last year. In June, Zappala said the cameras helped lower the neighborhood's crime rate by 37 percent.