BELLEVUE, TN (WSMV) - A Midstate neighborhood thinks license plate reader cameras are the answer to scaring off criminals.

The cameras are already in several places like Nashville, Belle Meade, Hendersonville, Mount Juliet, and Franklin. Now they're in Bellevue.

The cameras came online recently in the Poplar Creek Estates neighborhood. They're now at every entrance.

News4 spoke with John Alexander who has called the neighborhood home for four years. He said the license plate reader cameras give him peace of mind.

"It's safety. It's not an inconvenience to anyone," Alexander said.

Alexander said the Bellevue neighborhood hasn't had any serious crimes, but neighbors have had cars and garages broken into in the past.

The hope is the cameras will stop those crimes from happening.

"We'd like those people who are thinking about doing bad things in a neighborhood to go somewhere else," Alexander said.

If they don't, the Flock Safety camera will capture the make, model, color, and license plate of a car.

"You can't hardly come through Belle Meade without us knowing who you are," Sgt. Chuck Williams from the Belle Meade Police Department said.

Sgt. Williams knows all about license plate readers. Belle Meade has 19 of them spread throughout the city.

Officers will get alerts about stolen vehicles or license plates.

"We never dreamed that we would have this many stolen vehicles coming through our city until we got that technology," Sgt. Williams said.

In just the last month, they got eight hits on the cameras catching all but one. 

For Alexander, he thinks the neighborhood is sending a strong message.

"We think it's gonna be a deterrent, which means we'll be safer," Alexander said.

Each camera costs $2,000 per year. The neighborhood pays for them with HOA fees.

For any neighbor who has a problem with the camera recording their car, they can opt out by being put on a safelist.

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Reporter

Cameron Taylor is a national Edward R. Murrow award-winning journalist who joined the News 4 team in December 2018.

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