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Roanoke City Police hoping to add body cameras to all officer uniforms

By David Kaplan, dkaplan@wdbj7.com
Published On: Oct 18 2013 04:44:06 PM EDT
Updated On: Oct 18 2013 07:40:07 PM EDT

Everything the officers do choose to record, whether it's a DUI stop, drunk in public, whatever, is evidence admissible in court.

ROANOKE, Va. -

For some offenses, it can turn into a he-said-she-said between police the people they interact with.

Now Roanoke City Police has a plan to squash those questionable situations.

Right now, Roanoke City Police are using four body cameras.

They've only had them for two months and are mostly used by the city's four motorcycle officers.

Right now they city is testing a few prototypes. They hope to put one of the body cameras on every officer. Here's how they work: the officer has a wireless remote turning the camera on and off.

It lets officers record whatever situations they want, especially after they've pulled someone over.

"We already utilize dashcams. We just want to capture those incidents that are away from the vehicle in which the dashcam does not capture. We still have a viable avenue in which officers can record," said Captain Sam Roman.

Everything the officers do choose to record, whether it's a DUI stop, drunk in public, whatever, is evidence admissible in court.

Captain Roman says having video evidence beyond whatever procedures an officer follows is a huge benefit.

If all this sounds familiar, Danville Reporter Justin Ward reported back in May that Martinsville and Danville officers were going to use this technology.

Police in those localities tell him since they started using these body cameras they've also protected officers when they've been accused of police assault.