COBB COUNTY, Ga. (CBS46) Marietta Police say they are seeing a dramatic decline in violent crimes across the city, and that's all thanks to crime-fighting technology.

Police say the dramatic drop in crime is due in part to a new crime fighting device -- license plate reading cameras. 

“When I opened the shop it was crazy, like a lot of shootings a lot of drugs, and right now it’s really safe,” Adrian Estevez told CBS46.

Estevez owns a business and lives along Gateway Road. It’s one of the communities Marietta police have seen a 34 percent reduction in crime over the last year.

“Customers are now comfortable, now they bring their kids here,” Estevez explained.

Willful homicide, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault are some of the crimes that have dropped. Police explained that’s partly due to the automatic license plate reading camera.

“That’s excellent, that brings down the fear factor 34 percent,” said avian Brown.

Police say the device reads license plates on cars driving through the area. It sends alerts when it reads plates of a stolen vehicle or vehicles used in crimes. After a year of testing the device the department purchased 10 to place in strategic sections of the city.

The cameras retail for $2,000 each, making the total $20,000, which was paid for by the department’s asset forfeiture and at no cost to tax payers.

“I think that's a great idea. I would be ok with them using tax payer dollars to do that,” Brown said.

The creators of the cameras explained the data is stored for only 30 days. They added only the owners of the camera systems, municipalities or private home homers, have access to the footage.

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