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nickg5Flag for United States of America

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need webcam video help for night time and proof of time and audio

I have to provice as much evidence as I can to take a neighbor to court over 3 barking dogs 25 feet from my bedroom window.
Animal Control has already done all they can do which is send them a letter of "education" to explain the law.
Next step is two fold. Take evidence to civil court, or call the city police and hope the dogs are barking when they finally arrive and hope they have the guts to issue the "minimum" citation which is $250 (this is a serious fine because if they do not want to pay it, it is a criminal court).
I hate to see them get a fine that big. I have tried 2 anti dog barking devices and both were non conclusive at best. I got a 3rd more expensive model but I have nowhere to mount it close enough  and yet not be seen and possibly stolen or vandalized. It's range is 25 feet and from the window glass to the middle of the dog cage is near 28 feet. Setting it inside the window screen is as close as I can get and with winter time can not leave the window open.
And one negative is these dogs wag their tail when cops approach the cage. But, the are chronic barkers for various other reasons and causes.

I want to setup a computer webcam in the window.
I'm only bothered by the kennel 10pm to 7am.
Just having the camera in plain view inside the window will at least put a bug in their ear that I am gathering evidence.

So, how do I record several hours of webcam video?
What about audio?
Time and dated?
How would I show my evidence in the magistrate's court room?
If I got a 5 hour video and 45 minutes of it was all needed for that night's evidence, how would I save that part of the video?
Any other way to do this at some reasonable cost, beside a computer and webcam?
I'm told the burden of proof is on me. The dog owner's will say the dogs do not bark at night. And I would not expect them to say anything else.
I can not go to court with weak evidence. I need strong stuff the first time. I have researched all the city laws and visited and called all the departments that are or could be involved.

Will I need a flood light mounted on the house to be able to use a camera in darkness?

The lady told me in September she was planning to give them to a relative, and that same song and dance was told by her to the police yesterday.
The facts have been proven that she is keeping more than 1 dog for relatives because they can not have inside dogs in their apartment, etc.
So, this is why she has 4 outside dogs, 3 of which are chained or caged 24 hours a day and basically in my opinion, the 2 caged ones are not pets. THey have to poop in their cage and they spill their food no the ground too. And a strange man crosses my lot often and comes from an adjacent street, enters the cage, puts in water and food and leaves and goes back where he came from. This is not necessary since someone is at the house every day. This clearly shows she is keeping relative's dogs and there are no laws against number of dogs and dogs are not required to be licensed.

Any help on the technology part of web camera, video, audio, time and dated, night time video, needing a flood light on the subjects, showing the evidence in court room, use of a noise or motion activated audio-video device, using a timer for specific periods of time, etc.

I'll add points as help flows in.

I can not find a webcam zone.

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the magistrate told me all he needs is a decibel noise meter result.
He did not say, when (as in what time)

just how loud is it.

The county uses decibels.

This city does not. They use noise able to be heard outside 30 feet.

I do not want to go in there with only decibel level. Sounds too weak an evidence. Their barking might be violating the nuisance law regardless of decibel level and I do not know what level the judge is looking for.

the police have said get audio and video evidence.

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on the CM-818 it says it has range of 22 feet and the dogs are 28-30 feet from the brick wall. If it is installed above the window the distance is going to be greater.
Isn't the longest video you can make on a VCR, 6 hours? That should be enough. The problems are 10pm to 7am. The owner leaves at 5 or 6 in the morning and they can really bark then. 2-3am is a bad time, sometimes.

The judge was not very clear. Animal Control told me to ask him what evidence I need and he said a decibel noise meter and nothing more.
That seems weak, since the decibel could be too low for him, but they could still be chronic nuiscance in the eyes of the city ordinance, regardless of decibels.

I expect, if I install a flood light pointed at the dogs, the neighbors wil call the cops on me for some harrassment of their animals.
Can you shine your light anywhere you want?

Water hose worked great, but the cops said I could get in trouble on that.
I thought about a timer like on a water hose. Have it spray them from my yard once an hour. I know they will stay in their dog house because I did that back in September, garden hose.
It is so bad, a minister said kill them with chocolate or black walnuts. Is has to be bad for a minister to say that.
There are under the surface issues. It's not one barking dog, it is 4 and all outside and confined 24/7 and 3 do not even belong to them, they are relative's dogs that can not have dogs in their apartments.
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I'll check those other links.
I have some questions out there in forum land on what evidence is needed, has anyone been successful in court against the dog nuisance ordinance, would the magistrate be offended if I had a lawyer, etc.
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Also, I need a way to show my evidence in the court room, such as video and audio. I guess I can take a VCR and small TV, and time dated evidence.
Copies of the police records on the cops frequent trips to warn them.
Hope for a neighbor willing to go.

Police can not issue a citation unless they hear the barking. So far, they have not. These dogs wag their tail when you approach them, that is a big negative for me.
There are plenty of causes and reasons they bark.

The fine is a hefty $250 and revenge could cost me a broken truck windshield middle of the night, no telling.
>> on the CM-818 it says it has range of 22 feet

Maybe on a dark night with just the builtin IRs, but with some ambient light, I am getting 50-70ft. I had to tweak the lens focus a little since I watch up to 100 feet away in daylight.
Getting a timestamp on the tapes depends on having a vcr/dvr that will let you leave the Info Display on.

>> longest video you can make on a VCR, 6 hours?

8 hours. But like I said, they are getting hard to find, so are the six hour tapes.

>> Can you shine your light anywhere you want?

Yes and No. I would go for spillover, instead of directly at them.
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I have at least 50 once used 6 hour tapes.

By shining light any where, I was referring to flood lights pointed at the dogs, any legal issue there.

I've got many places to mount and shine a light to assist the camera.

This sounds like a very feasible option.
The tape can be edited to remove the 4-5 hours of "nothing" right? (using two VCR's)
And this camera is video and audio?
I have a DVD-VCR combo that is fairly new. It may allow "info display"

I would guess a civil court room should have some sort of monitor, maybe a TV.
Take tapes and VCR and any neighbors who want to go along and the records of all the times the police have been called.

So, reading above what am I missing?
time, date, sound, video, using vintage VCR is one of the least costly options we three families have.
I'm alone in a way, I'm 25 feet from the cage and the rest are 100 feet + but one lady did call the police yesterday.

The above described way to gather evidence sounds great unless it is too simple to work that way and I am missing something.

>> ...I was referring to flood lights pointed at the dogs, any legal issue there.

Unknown. But instead of pointing it directly at the dogs, I would point it at a place in my yard where it will still illuminate the dog area. You also might check if a regular bulb (75/100w) might lightup a larger area than a flood will.

>> The tape can be edited to remove the 4-5 hours of "nothing" right? (using two VCR's)


>> And this camera is video and audio?


>> I have a DVD-VCR combo that is fairly new. It may allow "info display"

That would be nice. Some units will auto-turnoff the display after about a minute. If yours does, there might be a setting in the Menu that will disable that.

>> I would guess a civil court room should have some sort of monitor, maybe a TV.

They should. It wouldn't hurt to call over there and ask.
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So, I am not missing anything in this?

It seems too easy.......because of the numerous people who have no real evidence gatheirng ideas, that were this complete.
Some ideas had pieces here, and pieces there.

>> So, I am not missing anything in this?

I can't think of anything. But you never can tell when something will "popup" during implementation.
It might not be elegant, but it should work.

>> It seems too easy.......

heh heh heh... being slightly paranoid (and not having much loose change), I have had a little bit of practice cobbling make-shift surveillance systems together.  
; )  

Good luck. I hope the Judge is impressed. Yell if you need us.
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Thank you. This was interesting and fun.  : ))
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Now I have to find out how often (number of hours per night, or number of nights in a row) can be called chronic.

The city and county agencies are not exactly defining chronic.
The law is vague on who can do what. You can complain through the county one way, and you can complain another way through the city police.

ain't that the Truth.
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I'll need mine inside the window.
Are yours mounted outside to be able to pick up the audio?
I'm told audio may be more important than video, but I want both.

any way to hook a microphone to it?

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closed window due to freezing weather.
>> I'll need mine inside the window.

That might cause problems with the IR LEDs and 'glare'. At least I haven't had much luck mounting them inside.

>> any way to hook a microphone to it?

Not without some serious soldering skills. It's a small 'button mic' located on the back end.
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ASKER you use the CM-818?
I'm finding a CM-818W and a CM-818T3 and the sellers seem to have the same specs for both (Ebay)
I have Ws. The T3 is a wireless model. The W uses A/V connectors.
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