College Station council agrees to add 90 body cameras to CSPD

(KBTX)
Published: Jun. 23, 2016 at 4:55 PM CDT
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Councilmembers in College Station approved a five-year agreement with TASER International to provide body cameras for every police officer. The deal will also improve CSPD's in-car video system and give them more data storage.

Assistant Chief Billy Couch with the College Station Police Department said, "I think society at large kind of expects our police officers to be wearing a system to record their interactions. We've always recorded it from the car, but there are many times that officer gets away from the car and we lose that interaction."

Right now, the only time you're likely to find a CSPD officer with a body camera is if you're at Northgate or pulled over. The new agreement will add 90 cameras to the department's sixteen.

Asst. Chief Couch said, "The officer gets out of the car or he's already out of the car and somebody approaches, he has the ability to hit a switch to turn the camera on. It also will have a thirty second buffer, so when the officer activates the camera or if one of the triggering systems activates the camera it goes back 30 seconds."

Dash cams have been in CSPD cars for decades. They said it's time for an upgrade.

"Currently, we have a replacement fund where we put some money aside to replace our system about every four years we replace, it's just time with new technology coming out so rapidly."

The TASER International agreement is for $706,183.31.

"We're going with an unlimited storage because obviously with every officer recording every, or most of their interactions, there's going to be a tremendous amount of storage needed," said Asst. Chief Couch.

CSPD said Bryan Police will also be working with the same system platform. It also allows Brazos County prosecutors to have direct access to the videos from both departments.