Albany police looking to upgrade officer body cameras
Body cameras for police officers are being discussed across the nation in the weeks after a Ferguson, Missouri police officer shot and killed an unarmed teenager.
Although Albany police have had the cameras for a few years, it is one of the police forces using this situation as a learning lesson. The body cameras, which are placed on the front of an officer's uniform, have turned out to not be what the police department expected though.
"Something was mentioned that they needed more high definition video and that's one of the things we'll be looking at but it is an expensive venture to dwell into during the search for the body cam," APD Media Manager Phyllis Banks said.
They are now looking to replace those cameras. In the meantime, Officer Robert Ausby says the police vehicles have cameras that point to the front and back of the cars which activate when the blue lights come on.
"We have microphones for the front and the back," Ausby said. "Officers have body mics on also that coincides with the cameras to pick up the audio."
Ausby says for now, even having a microphone on him at all times helps in some cases.
"The audio helps officers articulate what happened on the outside of the vehicle where the camera may not be," Ausby said. "It's real time audio so during the time the incident is taking place, it's recording the audio."
The police department says its biggest obstacle now is paying for the equipment which comes with a hefty price tag.