The Phantom Slasher, Revealed

Counter terrorism, major crimes and more​

A vehicles tyres continually slashed, but days of footage with not visual change in the media, let S21 CCTV reveal all.

Vehicles tyres repeatedly slashed but days of camera footage with little visual change in the video; let S21 CCTV reveal all.

Criminal damage may be considered minor versus some of the other crime types (including CSAM, counter terrorism, and serious organised crimes) for which S21 LASERi-X has been deployed. Too often, justice for victims of criminal damage can be overlooked, especially when such a huge amount of digital media review is required.

In one case, a victim reported that their car had been vandalised across a series of occasions, while parked outside their home. It was believed that the same person was each time causing the damage maliciously, but as it occurred on random days and times, tracking this was almost impossible. 

Equipped with S21 CCTV, the investigator rightly believed that the ‘phantom slasher’ could be identified quickly, and proceeded to import all the media into S21 CCTV within a minute. From the witness statement, the investigator was unable to refine the time-period any more than to a period from a Friday evening through to Monday morning (almost 3 days) when the damage was discovered. 

Opening the first video in playback mode, the investigator drew a target region around the tyre that was slashed. From the top menu, they ran the S21 CCTV function for target motion detection, between the specified date range, across all videos that had been imported. All videos were processed in a few minutes, without a GPU.

For each video, the results showed on the screen the amount of movement in the selected region. This allowed the investigator to quickly check each video; instantly seeing what segment of the video had a significant amount of motion near the tyre. The investigator then played the segment, which revealed the offending person. As the footage was also taken at night, the investigator was able to use the built-in frame enhancement to improve the colours and quality of the frame, for an undeniable facial match.

The investigation led to a conviction, the offender (a neighbour) was prosecuted accordingly and the victim was satisfied that justice was done. 

Be the hero, who finds more victims today