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Arlington Cops to Try Out Body Cameras

by Andrew Ramonas August 26, 2016 at 3:30 pm 0

Fairfax County police car lightsThe Arlington County Police Department will start testing various body cameras for cops next week, the agency announced today.

ACPD and the Arlington County Sheriff’s Office will give 25 of their officers the cameras to try out for four months beginning Monday.

From a press release:

Arlington, VA – Following months of research, the Arlington County Police Department will launch a test and evaluation of three Body Worn Camera (BWC) systems beginning on Monday, August 29, 2016. Twenty-five members of the Arlington County Police Department and Arlington County Sheriff’s Office will be outfitted with BWC technology as they conduct their law enforcement duties and responsibilities. The purpose of the test and evaluation phase is to thoroughly assess the effectiveness of each vendor’s equipment, determine the cost of a permanent BWC program and provide guidance on the development of a final BWC policy.

The Arlington County Police Department is committed to providing high-quality law enforcement services and recognizes the significance of accountability and transparency as functions of securing and maintaining the public’s trust and confidence. The BWC test and evaluation phase is an additional method to enhancing accountability and transparency while officers provide dedicated service to the residents and visitors of Arlington County. The BWC technology will supplement in-car audio/video recorders already deployed in police vehicles.

A robust policy has been developed to provide guidance to officers as they test and evaluate BWC technology. The policy details the contacts which require mandatory recording by the BWC technology. Recognizing privacy issues, storage capacity and the fact that every interaction does not merit the collection of video, the cameras will not be recording at all times.

Following the four month test and evaluation phase, a comprehensive assessment will be undertaken to determine the effectiveness of BWC in terms of community expectations, transparency, legislative requirements, and evidentiary needs.

For additional information, please see our BWC FAQs.

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