Dallas police testing officer body cameras - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Dallas police testing officer body cameras

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Dallas police are testing body cameras to be worn by officers on duty.

Police believe it could be the next step to protect the public, police departments and officers themselves.

Dallas Deputy Chief Andy Acord said the lapel cameras are an "effort to be more transparent in what we're doing and to further build upon the public's trust the department."

The body camera clips on the officer's lapel button and turns on by moving a lever on the device. The camera records both audio and video.

Dallas police think the body cameras will improve officer reports, help with court testimony, provide proof that could lead to more convictions, reduce assaults on officers and be a training tool.

Most notably it would provide crucial video and audio of officer-involved shootings. The body cameras would help determine what the officer saw and maybe thought while an incident was occurring.

"Our job is to protect and to serve the citizens and we want them to know that's what we're doing and this is another tool that could help us do that more efficiently," said Ron Pinkston, Dallas Police Association.

Dallas police said 45 officers have been wearing the cameras and testing them nearly a week.

Officials said a system could be in place for officers to wear the body cameras as soon as the end of 2014.

"We're not going to be in a big rush," said Acord. "We want to do it correctly."

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