Mt. Juliet Police: Department-wide rollout of body cameras starts Tuesday

by Caitlyn Shelton

Photo: Mt. Juliet Police

Photo: Mt. Juliet Police

MT. JULIET, Tenn. (WZTV) — Mt. Juliet Police will see a department-wide rollout of body cameras Tuesday. Officers are expected to undergo training this week and start using the devices while on patrol.

The police department finalized a contract with Utility Associates, Inc. for the smart devices called the "most advanced police body cameras available" in December. The cameras will be able to stream real-time live video to dispatchers and field supervisors, remotely activate, send alerts and detect when an officer is in a struggle, receive Be-On-The-Lookout photos and descriptions from dispatch, and activate when a firearm is discharged.

“Body-worn cameras are an effective law enforcement tool that will reinforce our department’s professionalism and transparency. We have had patrol unit mounted cameras for quite some time, but body-worn cameras will provide an additional perspective- going exactly where the officer goes. These devices will improve community relations, lower the number of citizen complaints, defend officers against false accusations, increase agency accountability, and improve officer training and evaluations,” Police Chief James Hambrick told FOX 17 News in December. “I’m grateful for the support from our elected officials on this important project and all the research from City Hall’s Information Technology staff, including our staff, in selecting the best system for our department.”

The cameras were selected after the city commission approved funding in July 2018 for the department's fiscal year budget. The five-year contract for the body camera system totals $540,600, according to Mt. Juliet Police.

All patrol vehicles will also be equipped with the new camera system.

Source: Fox 17

Kristen Jaynes