The Oro Valley Police Department is going high tech. They are the first law enforcement department in Southern Arizona to have cameras attached to officers.
It can be attached to the officer's shoulder or they can be attached to a pair of glasses. It's less than 4 inches and has a battery life between 10 to 12 hours.
Officer Forrest Cook has been testing out the equipment for the last three weeks. "So far it's nice, when it comes to evidentiary purposes video works a lot nicer then just audio," said Officer Cook. Currently the officers use recorders to tape a traffic stop.
The camera is turned on when the officer taps the pack twice. It starts recording 30 seconds before say a traffic stop and buffers every 30 seconds. The camera picks up audio and anything you do in front of the officer. Once the officer's shift is over, they place the camera in doc. The video and audio is uploaded to a server and the battery is re-charged.
The police department feels that this tool can help in several different ways. Lieutenant Chris Olson said, "if you think beyond traffic stops, if you think about crime scenes the officer will be capturing everything he sees at the location."
OVPD bought five cameras from the Scottsdale based company that makes tasers. They cost about $1,100 and the police department was able to pay for them, from confiscated drug money.
The police expect to train the officers on the equipment by the end of this month. They are hoping by the first week of December, the four other officers will be using the cameras. Two motorcycle officers, two DUI officers and Officer Cook will be the only department employees with the cameras.
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