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Big Brother? Or Big Smother? Just a day in the life in Airstrip One Wichita.

If you are caught making a violation on camera by a staffer who is monitoring Old Town from an office in City Hall, that staffer will call and alert a nearby officer of your violation.

The staffer will provide the officer with your location, a description of your vehicle and what violation you made.

That officer can then pull you over.

“I hope people don’t perceive this as ‘Big Brother,’ ” Wichita police Sgt. Kelly O’Brien said. “Officers are monitoring public places where you see it from public viewing. It’s just a way for officers to enhance their abilities to protect the community and improve traffic safety and also improve officer safety.”

Still, O’Brien knows not everyone will think this is OK.

“I did an informal survey before we ever did this to every friend and person I came across, and it’s a 50/50 split,” he said, mentioning that even his wife and daughter were not necessarily on board with camera-based traffic enforcement.

There are 97 cameras monitoring the core of Old Town, with particular attention at First and Washington, Second and Washington and Third and Mead.

Eye in the sky watching you 24/7. How could anyone possibly associate that with “big brother”?

There are ways to beat camera-based offenses, pretty easy ones. However, most will simply opt to pay the taxes fines. That’s what Big Brother O’Brien counts on. And the courts have already rubber-stamped the telescreens. Probably not 50/50 either – the peeps gotta love this “security”.


Definitely NOT Big Brother. You have the right to confront the teevee accuser. Or maybe the keyboard. Nah. Kansas.com.