Thanks to funding from the DeBruce Foundation and Kansas City Police Foundation, around 900 patrol officers now have body-worn cameras in place.
The Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department provided an update on their rollout of body-worn cameras on Thursday.
The cameras work with the in-car camera system that has been in police vehicles for decades, according to the department.
Both the in-car and body-worn cameras will trigger at the same time. This can be done manually or whenever lights and sirens are flipped on in the vehicle.
“Most officers want that camera running. I don’t know of too many officers who would ever say I don’t want a camera today,” KCPD Chief Richard Smith said.
Smith said that because officers are already used to the in-car camera system, there should be no issue getting on when to use the body cameras.
Currently, officers in the patrol bureau are wearing the cameras. That includes patrol officers, traffic officers and tactical officers.
Policies dictate cameras are turned on any time law enforcement action may be taken.
The department was recently awarded a federal grant to provide 400 additional cameras to the investigations unit. They are currently in the process of executing that grant. Chief Smith said that the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis last summer sparked a cry for change, and KCPD listened.
“I think it’s been a tough year for everyone,” Smith said of the protests and calls for police reform following the incident. He said that officers have also wanted this for years, but they struggled to get the funding
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