October 5, 2015
“As more and more police departments across the country adopt police body camera programs, they face many questions considering this new technology. We at WOLFCOM are happy that The Indian Beach Police Department chose to use our WOLFCOM VISION for their body camera program. This department appreciates the VISION’s compact size, outstanding video quality and durability. We know our VISION body camera will serve them well. At WOLFCOM, we make the best, because cops deserve the best!” said WOLFCOM Founder Peter Austin Onruang.
Chief AJ Sutzko set up his department’s police body camera program. “We’re the first agency in the County to use police body cameras. Everything is going fine, so far so good…. My officers love em. We just had a neighboring agency come down to look at them,” said Sutzko.
“I’ve been with the agency 20 years and 17 years ago is when they introduced car cameras. They were very expensive at the time and the video and audio was just of the immediate area around the vehicle, so the range was limited. Now with body cameras, the video is with you so it goes where you go, so there’s never any question of what happened,” said Sutzko.
“I’m a big proponent of video and I believe it keeps everyone honest when they know they’re being recorded. Our police department doesn’t get a lot of complaints, but they [the body cameras] are useful with compliance. Body cameras are a cost effective way to make sure everyone behaves correctly. With audio and video recording, there’s no doubt of what took place,” said Sutzko.
“I was recently promoted to chief I looked at our departments vehicle cameras and realized they were coming to the end of their life expectancy. Instead of replacing them at $4,800 for each car camera, which is a lot of money for any department, it makes more sense to invest in and use body cameras. This saves the department a lot of money that can go towards other much needed equipment,” said Sutzko.
“We looked at and tested several cameras. We liked the WOLFCOM VISIONS small size. The other body cameras were too big… like having a big rock in the middle of your chest. The VISION is small and out of the way. Everyone agreed that they like that compactness of the VISION body camera. A lot of the other brands on the market are too big and bulky,” said Sutzko.
“I really like the swivel lens… it allows you to place it on different places on your uniform. I also like the casing… it seems to be made out of aluminum (aircraft grade aluminum) which makes it very durable… The price was really good too. Cost is a major factor. Anytime you can purchase good quality piece of equipment for a low cost, that’s important for any department’s budget….I am very happy with the VISION body camera, it meets all our needs,” said Sutzko.
The department has 5 full time police officers and 6 part time police officers. “The initial purchase of 5 body cameras is for my full time police officers and I’m thinking of ordering extras for my part time police officers,” said Sutzko.
“The video quality is excellent. Even In use of low light situations, we haven’t seen many other body cameras that can record the same quality of video as the WOLFCOM VISION at night in low light situations…The VISION takes adequate video in low light situations with just street lights or car headlights and during the daytime it’s exceptional video quality. We tested other bigger body cameras thinking the video quality would be better, but it wasn’t,” said Sutzko.
“We use local video storage. We download all of our video onto an external hard drive we call “the vault” and organize the video files by category such as “DUI arrest videos”, etc….Our official police body camera policy is that the body camera must be activated on all calls and vehicle stops and anytime the police officer is acting in an official capacity. If they just having normal contact with someone, say in a store buying something and talking with someone, it doesn’t have to be active in that situation,” said Sutzko.
Chief Sutzko says he hopes the WOLFCOM VISION will stand up to the environment his officers patrol. “We know the VISION is nano-coated to stand up to weather conditions. We’re a beach front community, right on the coast. You could go outside of our station, throw a rock and hit the ocean. We’ll see how they hold up to the salt air,” said Sutzko.