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Body Cameras for Safety

There is little doubt that body cameras for law enforcement help to keep our officers and community members safer. And it's with safety in mind that the Victoria County Sheriff's Department has applied for a grant to help cover the cost of body cameras to be worn by their varied deputies.

Here is what the research tells us.

Research from the National Institute of Justice offers that the proponents of body-worn cameras point to several potential benefits, which include five key components; better transparency as body-worn cameras often result in more accountability and "thus may improve law enforcement legitimacy," increased civility as body-worn cameras have been known to "result in higher rates of citizen compliance to officer commands" during encounters and fewer complaints lodged against law enforcement and quicker resolution. It's been found that body-worn cameras may lead to a faster resolution of citizen complaints and lawsuits that allege excessive use of force and other forms of officer misconduct along with corroborating evidence as footage captured may actually be used as evidence in arrests or prosecutions. Finally, last but not least, body-worn cameras can help with future training opportunities by allowing for educational scenarios with opportunities to implement new strategies.

What does the grant include and what will it cost the county?

According to our friends at the Victoria Advocate, "The grant is for roughly $65,000 and requires a 50-50 match from the county. The $65,000 required of the county would come from the general fund,  Robin Knipling, Victoria County grant administrator offers. The 55 body-worn cameras would be used by the Sheriff’s Office patrolmen, warrants deputies, interdiction deputies, school resource deputies, and reserve deputies."

If you would like more information, see the Victoria Country Sheriff Office website here.

On a side note, you've got to see the latest camera footage from a surveillance camera from the Victoria County Sheriff's office as law enforcement is looking for a hit and run driver who wrecks into a vehicle parked next to the Victoria Courthouse. It's in the button below.

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