- Associated Press - Monday, January 23, 2017

CLARKSVILLE, Ind. (AP) - The Clarksville Police Department hopes to bring back body cameras six months after state requirements caused the program’s suspension.

An Indiana law passed in July requires police departments to store video footage from dashboard and body cameras for 190 days. Clarksville suspended the program after not having sufficient space to store such videos, the News and Tribune (https://bit.ly/2jQXnSX ) reported.

“It was a great tool not just for the betterment of the community, but also on how to improve in-house in reference to officers on how to perform their jobs,” Police Chief Mark Palmer said.

At the time, Clarksville had the capacity to save the videos for 30 days. Complying with the law’s requirements could have cost three times more than the town would spend today, Palmer said.

Palmer hopes present his proposal to the town council in the next two months to reinstitute the program, which he said will cost roughly $75,000. The proposal includes $62,500 for more than 50 cameras and redaction software, as well as $9,200 for two 30-terabyte storage units.

“Even if the council had given me the money that day (the law went into effect) for the cameras and the servers that that House bill had required, we would not have been able to do it,” Palmer said. “Our policies had not been updated at that point. Our officers were not trained, supervisors were not trained.”

Town Council President Paul Fetter said he’s optimistic the board will approve Palmer’s request.

“We were unhappy when we had to quit using them because they were so effective,” Fetter said.


Information from: News and Tribune, Jeffersonville, Ind., https://www.newsandtribune.com

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