- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 9, 2014

GILLETTE, Wyo. (AP) - Sheriff’s deputies in Campbell County began wearing small cameras to record their interactions with the public months before the use of body cameras became part of the nationwide debate over police killings.

Advocates say body cameras, which clip onto an officer’s uniform, can help prevent or at least document deadly confrontations between police and citizens.

President Barack Obama is calling for federal funding to put body cameras on 50,000 law enforcement officers. In Campbell County, sheriff’s deputies began wearing them in April.

A Homeland Security grant enabled the sheriff’s office to buy 52 body cameras for $46,000. The department originally thought to replace vehicle dashboard cameras with body cameras but decided to the vehicle cameras, said sheriff’s Capt. Roy Seeman.

Deputies have a choice between two types of body cameras: A cylinder-shaped camera attaches to a vest or glasses; the other design resembles a pager and clips onto a button.

“The reality is that if this can help show that they are consistently doing things the right way, then I see it as a good thing,” said sheriff’s Capt. Roy Seeman.

The Gillette News-Record reports (https://bit.ly/1zpjbW2) that Gillette police also are looking into buying body cameras.

Officers have tested several models and would like to start buying them within the next couple of months, Police Chief Jim Hloucal said.

___

Information from: The Gillette (Wyo.) News Record, https://www.gillettenewsrecord.com


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