Walls police use wearable cameras as "silent partner" - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Walls police use wearable cameras as "silent partner"

By Daniel Hight - bio | email

WALLS, MS (WMC-TV) - Officers at one Mississippi police department are not just using technology to catch crooks, they are wearing it.

The video camera is the size of a pack of gum. "They work fantastically," said Walls Police Chief Gary Boisseau.

It is pinned to the pocket of a police officer and the camera records what the officer sees.

"If you're chasing after someone on foot," said Boisseau, "you get every step of the way."

The five officers on the force often fly solo and need an extra set of eyes and ears while on the streets.

"I wanted to have a silent witness or a silent partner, as it were, to be able to back up the guys and to show what actually happened in any given situation," said Boisseau.

The police chief favors the cameras because of its cost. Each one is only $10.

"Its good sound, good video, full color, aluminum," said Boisseau. "I mean, they're heavy duty. You can drop them, step on them and everything else."

The quality is good enough to assist in court. "There was one DUI stop that the video was hinged on the outcome of the case," said the chief.

Boisseau said the small camera gets into the action and is more helpful than ones mounted in police squad cars.

"So much of the time it only tells half of the story you see from what's behind the windshield," said Boisseau. "Especially on a traffic stop, if you're leaning into a car, that camera doesn't see what this does."
     
The chief hopes the video the officers capture will help them capture lawbreakers. Boisseau said the cameras can record about two hours of video on a single charge.He told me official police cameras similar to the ones they're using are as much as $900 each.

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