NEW BEDFORD - City councilors got an up-close look at some of the surveillance equipment used by the New Bedford Police Department Tuesday during the council's Committee on Public Safety & Neighborhoods meeting held at the Rockdale Ave. headquarters. 

Councilors previously requested Police Chief Joseph Cordeiro provide an update on the status of surveillance cameras across the city, and how they may help curb some aggressive behavior by panhandlers.

Cordeiro offered a brief presentation of the camera system and explained how it is functioning.

"The New Bedford Police Department is up and running with technology and using technology to ensure public safety throughout the city and maximizing our efforts through technology and data that they're both running collectively," Cordeiro said.

Tools such as portable cameras, called "pole cameras," can be placed anywhere in the city and will be a method of keeping tabs of panhandling.

"If we have enough complaints about an overly aggressive panhandler at a certain location and time, we can put that up to capture that behavior and then review that behavior and decide if that's enough to bring some criminal charges," said Cordeiro.

Following the presentation and some questions, Cordeiro took councilors through the department's communications room. There, councilors got to see how the city's Shot Spotter system operates and more real-time surveillance available to officers.

Along with the city's cameras, there is also a database where residents and business owners can register their own private cameras to be used if necessary during a police investigation in the area.