A partnership between a tech company and Pinckney Police is being touted as a way to help solve crimes and possibly even prevent them.

Pinckney Police recently joined more than 400 other departments nationwide in a video-sharing partnership with Ring, which produces a popular doorbell camera. The effort will give police access to camera footage taken from the front door cameras of private homes. Although officials are quick to point out the footage that is obtained will all be voluntarily turned over by the doorbell owners and that police would never have direct access to the cameras.

Ring doorbells stream real-time video to smartphones or other devices, allowing homeowners to see who is at their front door and to communicate directly with them. In addition, many of the device’s owners also utilize an online app named “Neighbors” that allows them to share videos and other information with residents who live close by, although you do not have to have a Ring device to use the Neighbors with Ring app. It can be used with any security camera system.

While Pinckney Police, like anyone else on the app, would have the ability to click on those videos and watch them, their protocol is to send a message to the poster for permission to use the footage. In addition, they say the department has no incentive agreements with the company for taking part in the partnership. (JK)