• Atlanta police chief looks into body-mounted cameras for officers

    By: Rachel Stockman

    Updated:

    ATLANTA - Only Channel 2 Action News has learned Atlanta's police chief wants all of his officers on the street to wear body cameras.
     
    The calls for more monitoring of police have increased since the shooting death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.
     
    Channel 2's Rachel Stockman spoke exclusively with Atlanta Police Chief George Turner. He said the department began working on the plan even before the Missouri shooting.
     
    “If the officer had a camera, we wouldn't be having a whole lot of these discussions,” Turner said.
     
    Turner said the plan is to eventually phase body cameras on all officers. Atlanta police officers are currently testing several different vendors. Officers at the airport precinct and on the BeltLine are determining which work the best.
     
    “We are working with a couple of sources to try to determine the cost and how long we would need to store the data,” Turner said.
     
    Turner said the cameras would save court costs and decrease complaints against officers.
     
    According to a case study with the Rialto, California Police Department, complaints filed against officers fell by 88 percent.
     
    “It is very difficult to argue with a recording,” Turner said.
     
    One of the challenges is how to store the mass amount of data that would be generated by the recordings.
     
    “When we begin to look at the scope of this project, the data collecting, it is going to be a pretty substantial re-occurring cost,” Turner said.
     
    Turner believes the first phase could exceed $500,000. Cameras range from $60 to $400.
     
    “I think it is a good idea because there are so many implications of people saying this happened or that happened,” said Cindy Otter, who lives in Macon, Georgia.


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