For a small Mississippi police department made up of about 5 on-duty officers, they can use all the help they can get. Thankfully for the Walls police department, this help comes from a small piece of technology that goes for under $100, and has saved the department countless man hours, making protecting citizens and fighting crime much easier.
Tiny micro cameras, about the size of a stick of gum, can record hours of continuous footage on a single charge. Officers wear these cameras in their front uniform pocket, using them as first person cameras to record action as it happens. To insure that none of the important events are missed or deleted, they have a policy in place that makes it mandatory to keep recording everything once the camera has been turned on.
“I call it my silent partner,” said Walls Police Chief Gary Boisseau. “We’re a small department, there’s usually one, maybe two of us on at a time, and it’s good to have that extra set of ears — that extra set of eyes out there… It gives me peace of mind knowing — exactly what happened during one encounter is documented and out there for anybody who wants to see it.”
Aside from insuring that officers are doing a great job and that all the details are clearly recorded for in the event of an investigation, the use of these cameras also helps to save time and money for citizens and courts. Take this example of a contentious DUI case:
“We had a DUI stop several months ago and this person denied everything that happened,” Boisseau said. “After watching that video – [that person] honestly did not know what happened that day because they had so much to drink. They pled guilty before it ever went to court.”
We here, at BrickHouse Security, are glad to see police officers using camera technology in a way that not only helps them make solving crimes an easier process for everyone involved, it also helps the citizens make sure they are treated with respect during stops, and also saves money by having all the proof they need before the case even makes it into court. We hope other police departments take note of this practice and start using it as well.