Both violent and property crimes are on the rise here in Anchorage with many of these crimes happening in front of security cameras.

Vehicle theft is one such crime many of us are becoming a victim of. Recently a car belonging to a teacher at the Rilke Schule German School of Arts and Sciences was stolen right from the parking lot. School Principal Chris Barr discussed steps the school is now taking to help prevent this from happening again.

Barr says, "We are working to install surveillance cameras to monitor parking lot activity, and we are taking steps to further secure the vehicles in our parking lot during the day."

Local companies like Able Locksmith and Security Center in Anchorage sell surveillance cameras and are seeing a spike in business.

Daniel Pena is the electric security manager for the business.

"We definitely have been seeing a lot more residential installations. We just got 2 done last week and businesses as well," said Pena.

He says more homeowners are seeking his company's products.

"Basic theft is what we're seeing. Vehicles getting broken into. People are walking around looking for cars that are unlocked."

The company specializes in high definition surveillance cameras, and although they have these cameras monitoring their own building, company owner Clint Waggoner says they've been victimized, as well.

Everything from car break-ins in their own parking lot, to even the murder of a man just a month ago that was captured on video from a camera mounted outside the back area of the store. Waggoner turned over that video to police.

"It helped them identify three guys, the perpetrators that committed the murder. So they told us that it was very helpful that they actually knew from the camera that they can identify one or two of the guys, is what we were told."

It's the features that customers want, such as looking at what's going on at home or work while being in a different location. The most highly sought feature is the ability to clearly see one's face as they are committing a crime.

Pena says, "If we capture something of interest, we want to be able to get that facial recognition so that we can prosecute that, and we'll get that to the police and the justice system can do their jobs."

Using more advanced cameras is helping to put a big dent in the rising crime rate. Anchorage Police now urge both home and business owners to install cameras on their property if they haven't already done so. The prices of many of these hi-tech cameras are dropping, allowing the average homeowner to afford them.

RELATED STORIES:

Deadly Midtown stabbing caught on video, charges say 

3 indicted in fatal Midtown slashing