LA To Be First City To Equip All Cops With Body Cameras

The event surrounding Ferguson and similar cases have led citizens to be more aware, wary, and even more critical of the use of police power in the enforcement of the law. In order to protect not only citizens but law enforcers as well, Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti announced a plan to equip LAPD officers with body cameras. These cameras will provide the evidence that might be needed in confrontations between police officers and the public and to prevent, or at least deter, tragedies like Ferguson from happening again.

This LAPD body cam project is no small undertaking. It involves a total of 7,000 cameras to equip all LAPD officers. For the meantime, however, the mayor and the police department have signed a contract that will get at least 800 of these Axon cameras to be distributed first to patrol office and specialized details. The $1.5 million needed to put this plan into action was reported to have been raised privately.

The LAPD has been conducting test of these video cameras for almost a year now with pretty much positive results. Areas where officers have started wearing them have seen a reduction of complaints against officers and the need to use force. Of course, this is immediately correlated to the police being more careful with how the resolve situations and the public being more aware of "big brother".

This move to equip police with cameras isn't limited to Los Angeles, of course. Police departments across the country are starting to test similar new approaches to law enforcement. But if the LAPD manages to raise more funds, both private and public, the city might claim the distinction of being the first major city to deploy that many cameras on police officers.

SOURCE: Mayor Eric Garetti