April 15, 2015
AZLE, TX- The Azle Police Department recently purchased 16 WOLFCOM 3RD EYE Police Body Cameras. The purchase consisted of 2 year warranties and radio cables so officers can hook up their units to radios to utilize the radio speaker function.
Lt. Bill Russell says the department has studied the issue of body cameras for about two years. “All the incidents going on around the country are just reinforcing our resolve and decision to purchase and use the body cameras,” said Russell. “We had been waiting for technology to get to the place where it was feasible and the prices into a practical range.”
In the past the department used dashboard mounted cameras in their police cars. “The dash cams proved to be valuable in the investigation of citizen complaints and are able to shed light on what happened on various events. Purchasing body cameras was the next step and we wanted to do this and be on the cutting edge of technology, in order to provide better public service and bring better cases to court,” said Russell.
The purchase of the cameras was made in part by using a six-thousand dollar grant the department received from participating in a D.O.T. survey. “We conducted an assessment of various cameras. We had some demo cameras sent to us and compared capability and price. Based on those two criteria, WOLFCOM blew away all the competitor’s cameras,” said Russell.
“Our police officers like the various functions including the fact that the body cameras can be used day and night and do not need ambient light. The infrared is way ahead of several competitors. When we compared the demo body cameras, we realized other brands did not have all the capabilities of the WOLFCOM,” said Russell. “Based on our assessment, we took the bold step of purchasing the first 8 police body cameras using the available grant funds. The city supported that decision and made it mandatory that all officers should wear body cameras. We then ordered an additional 16 body cameras and purchased about $30,000 worth of technology infrastructure to support the body cameras,” said Russell.
Russell says that a majority of the 25 police officers in the department are pro camera, “a few were reluctant, but we’re confident that after using the cameras they will fully embrace the change,” said Russell.