Duluth Police Department implements body cameras

By KBJR News 1

July 3, 2014 Updated Jul 3, 2014 at 6:39 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com)--- It's a tool aimed at protecting police officers..

"Whenever they go to an incident that's going to require them to take some type of action or require them to interact with a community member then we like to have them put it on," said Sgt. Jayme Carlson with the Duluth Police Department.

After a month and half of testing it out, ninety six officers at the Duluth Police Department are now wearing body cameras out on the streets.

"we're gonna look at reducing prosecutor time's in court, saving on times investigating complaints, saving on time investigating actual incidents because you got it on camera and when you have things on camera, it just makes life a whole lot easier," said Carlson.

The cameras are not rolling 24/7, and officers have the ability to turn them on or off. However, they cannot edit or delete the footage.

The cams not only protect the officers, but the community.

"It's gonna be a tool that we have to help hold our staff accountable for the type of behavior that we expect," said Deputy Chief Robin Roeser with the Duluth Police Dept.

Camera footage is stored in accordance with city and state guidelines ...encounters with no enforcement are saved for 60 days, arrests, interviews and citations are kept for 3 years , while more serious cases like homicides are permanently saved.

The video is not reviewed unless something serious comes up.

"If there's a complaint against an officer, then we'd go and find that video and review that particular video," said Carlson.

Reducing the number of false complaints, enhancing public trust and creating a safer community.

Police say the body cameras capture 90 percent more coverage than dash cameras.

Written and posted to the web by Raeanna Marnati