Body cameras purchased for Frederick, Bowie police departments

Police body cameras roll out at two stations

More cameras are now rolling when it really counts and two local police stations have purchased body cameras all in the name of transparency.

WUSA9 got a look at the new technology, which is supposed to protect both the suspect and the officer.

Officer Randy Lawson from the Frederick Police Department took WUSA9 for a ride along Wednesday, just the second day that the 18 body cameras have been in use.

"If something does happen, you know, the public will be able to see from as soon as it got turned on, to the scene when it finished, to see exactly what occurred," Lawson said.

It was just a few minutes on the road before the first stop, a red Chevy Cavalier with a broken tail light. The camera caught it all without a problem.

"It could be a high priority call. A robbery in progress, overdose, and the amount of things that are already going on in our heads, and making contingencies for ‘ok I'm going to show up, if there's someone there, I'm going to do this. If they've broken up, I'm going to do this,’" Lawson explained.

And that's an issue that goes far beyond Frederick.

RELATED: May be additional video in the shooting death of Terrence Sterling

It was less than a month ago that Terrence Sterling was shot and killed by police in Washington, D.C. The officer was not able to turn his camera on to capture the shooting.

Chief Edward Hargis said it's all about training his officers to make it muscle memory.

"Putting the car in park, grabbing the keys, opening the door, closing the door, and turning the camera on,” Hargis said. “It all needs to be muscle memory so that it becomes automatic."

Meanwhile, new cameras were rolled out on Monday in Bowie. The department purchased cameras, enough for nearly every officer.

"So it took the ‘he said, she said’ away,” Nesky said. “We're not looking to capture bad behavior. We're looking to capture our officers doing the right thing."


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