Private Investigation Surveillance – The Similarities and Differences between Connecticut and Queens, NYJanuary 19, 2021
When it comes to surveillance, (custody, child support, infidelity or injury) there are similarities and differences wherever your Private Investigator will be conducting it, whether in Connecticut or the Queens NY area. Your ultimate goal is the same no matter where your surveillance takes place, which is to catch the subject doing whatever it is you are hired to “catch” them doing (or not doing), obtain the proof (whether in still photos or video) and provide that proof to the client.
Here are some other similarities:
- Equipment – Any Private Investigator that is good at their profession has several “cameras” at their disposal. These come in all different types and sizes. The camera on their smart phone is a good start, but should not be the only “camera” they have. For example, we have several “night-vision” cameras, covert cameras for indoor footage and good “distance” cameras as well as always having the most up to date smartphone with the best rated camera. All of these combined help to get the best result possible in any situation when the time comes.
- Vehicle – you need to be prepared to “blend” in with the surroundings. You need a vehicle that will not stand out or be noticed. Your PI should also have access to more than one vehicle in order to “switch out” if the need arises so as not to draw attention to the same vehicle appearing in the area too often. Tinted windows are crucial (level of tint important for different areas). Having your vehicle stocked with a few different changes of clothing, several hats and different jackets – all should be non-descript and dull colors. You also need to carry several different face masks*. You should have 2 to 3 very different masks with you at all times – no logos or designs. Just a solid black, solid white and the ever popular “disposable”. People in this time period see your mask before anything else, so you need to keep changing them out. You should also carry a small bottle of hand sanitizer in your pocket. This is a huge necessity for traveling on public transportation or into any questionable areas. Most importantly, you need to blend into the crowd, and not stand out. You should have a change of shoes as well in case it is raining or snowing, non-descript umbrellas, food, battery packs, etc. Cover all situations as much as possible.
- GPS – you need to have an accurate GPS system on at all times. This will serve many purposes – not only to get you to the starting destination point to “set up” but also to help when following the subject. You need to be able to look at the display and see the streets around you, upcoming intersections, potential traffic issues, including not only traffic, but it is critical in areas with traffic cameras, red light cameras and speed cameras. It also helps to help you know the coordinates of the location you wind up in.
- Preparation – In order to have a successful surveillance, you need to help the Investigator help you. Be ready with photos, vehicle information, address information and anything you can possibly think of that will help the Investigator. Information is key to the outcome, so tell us everything you know. No detail is unnecessary. If they have a camera on their house, tell us. If they own two of the same vehicle, tell us. If you know their schedule pattern, tell us. If you have already had someone try and fail (either another investigator, a friend/family member or even yourself) you need to tell us. We don’t judge you, we want to help you. If the subject may be suspicious, we will proceed with caution. Most importantly, when you are ready to hire someone to perform the surveillance, it is critical that you do not change your patterns – don’t suddenly ask them questions you normally would not, such as “what are you doing today?” and definitely do not tell ANYONE that you are hiring a PI. No matter how much you trust the person, it will still get out and then it will be much, much harder (which means more hours and much more money than you need to spend) to be able to conduct the surveillance successfully. The most important part of any surveillance is the element of surprise. The longer we can maintain that, the better the outcome will be.
- Hire the right Private Investigator – The most important asset to the Private Investigator regardless of where the surveillance takes place, is their mindset. They need to be ready to bring their “best game” to the surveillance. They should be well rested, healthy and readily adaptable to any situation. They need to know the area so they can prepare the right way and get you the best results possible. They need to be prepared for any scenario – both in their mindset and their equipment – everything from a full tank of gas to clothing to food to battery packs. A surveillance is similar to participating in the camping show “Alone” in that respect. The person that will do the best is the best prepared. You don’t want the person who was up partying the night before and comes to work hungover and tired with a quarter tank of gas and no backup camera right? So choose wisely when choosing a Private Investigator.
The Differences – when conducting a surveillance in areas as different as Connecticut and Queens, NY, there are some very distinct differences as to how a surveillance is done. Here are just some of those differences along with some examples:
- In Connecticut, the “sit” is further away, usually down the street, or even the most likely departure route. You typically need to check in with the local police department first, so as not to have a Glastonbury cop roll up behind you with lights and ruin the surveillance, for example. In Queens, the “sit” is much closer – it could be as close as one house away. A police check-in in Glendale, for example, is almost never needed. Side view and rear view mirrors are used more frequently, especially when sitting past the subject’s house. You need a parking spot that you can exit from quickly.
- In Connecticut, the “pursuit” is usually much further away. Usually you would follow in different lanes of traffic and use other cars to block the subject’s view. Parallel following in a parking lot and overshooting turns and doubling back is more commonly used. In Queens, the pursuit, at times, can be more aggressive, even bumper-to-bumper.
- In Connecticut, there is rarely a “one-way” road situation in Wethersfield, for instance. In Laurelton, Queens for example, it is more common to have one-way roads and a person may turn down the wrong way on a one-way road in order to save time in traveling down the road in the right direction.
- In Connecticut, there is usually only one mode of transportation used during a surveillance (a car). In Queens, it is not unusual to have multiple modes of transportation within the same surveillance (a car, cab, bus, subway, bicycle, etc.).
- In Connecticut, heavy tinting on the windows of the vehicle can stand out more in some areas. In Queens, heavy tinting in more acceptable.
- In Connecticut, the pursuit is different because there are no red light or speed cameras. In Queens, there are numerous red light and speed cameras that you need to watch out for.
- In Connecticut, pursuits are often higher speeds. In Queens, they are very often low speed pursuits.
- In Connecticut, neighborhoods often have less activity, which make the Private Investigator more noticeable in Manchester for example. In Queens, there is much more activity in most neighborhoods like Long Island City and you can pretty much hide in plain sight near where your subject is.
- In Connecticut, switching surveillance positions is more noticeable. In Queens, switching positions is not as noticeable, however it can be more difficult because there are less spots to choose from for the Investigator to park.
- In Connecticut, in areas like East Hartford you can follow more loosely and canvas the area soon after to pick the subject up later. In Queens, if you follow too loose, you will probably lose them in South Jamaica and you will probably not be able to locate them again that day.
- In Connecticut, you rarely encounter a “foot pursuit”. In Queens, you often encounter a “foot pursuit”.
These are just some of the similarities and differences in surveillances done in Connecticut and in Queens NY. The main point here is when you need a surveillance done, and done properly, you need to hire an investigator that KNOWS the area and knows it well. One that will get the best results possible with the least amount of issues. So when you are ready to hire someone for your surveillance needs, give us a call. We have a team of Investigators that are from both Queens NY and from Connecticut. They are the best at what they do and always come with the right mindset, are well prepared and ready to give their all to your case. We assign the right people to the right situation and that means the best possible outcome for your case. We are ready to begin when you are. The next step is up to you.
Investigreat, LLC is a recognized full service Private Investigation Agency that is fully licensed, insured and bonded in Jamaica, Long Island City and Connecticut, handling cases in Queens NY, Brooklyn NY, the Bronx, Manhattan, Long Island NY and all of Connecticut. Adam Dornfeld, along with his wife Terri, have been working cases from missing persons and surveillance to worker’s compensation and all general investigation services, together since 1992.
Investigreat LLC | Private Investigators serving Jamaica NY, Long Island City NY, Brooklyn NY, Queens NY, Bronx NY, Westchester County NY, Long Island NY and all of Connecticut.
Connecticut Office: 860-899-1710 | New York Office: 718-412-1845 | Text: 718-309-1269
*Note – the wearing of face masks was mandatory during the COVID-19 Pandemic in 2020-2021