More than a month after getting body cameras, Quincy police say it’s not only helped officers but victims too.
Every officer in the Quincy Police Department now has a built-in body camera from a company called BodyWorn. They now have 58 body cameras along with 17 in-car cameras.
Sgt. Adam Yates says all officers are required to have their body camera turned on, even on the most routine of calls.
“They give an accurate depiction of what happens on a scene,” said Sgt. Yates.
Certain department heads back at the police station can then watch what an officer is seeing in real time.
The cameras are also equipped with safety features.
“There’s an officer-down function on the camera,” said Sgt. Yates. “If the camera lays prone for a period of time it will send an alert out to all the other officers cameras that are working. It’ll say BodyWorn down and it gives the officers name and then it will actually give a GPS location on a computer.”
The body cameras can also help in court, especially in cases involving domestic disputes.
“When you go on a lot of these calls things happen so quick and emotions are high,” said Officer Zach Bemis. “You get that first-person view right off the bat.”
If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth volumes and Bemis says the body cameras have, in a sense, changed the world of policing.
“Prior to having body cams it was basically our word against theirs,” said Bemis. “Now it’s on video.”
Sgt. Yates says they’re hoping to add gunshot detection to the camera software in a couple months.