Safety

SLO police keeping crime in sight with body cameras

San Luis Obispo Police body cams

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - It's watching everything you do. Body cameras are currently being worn by 10 officers.

"An officer would come in at the start of their shift and select a camera," said Lt. Brian Amoroso, with the San Luis Obispo Police Department. 

It's part of a pilot program at the San Luis Obispo Police Department where officers are testing them. In a few weeks, cameras will be rolled out department wide.  

"The cameras provide a lot of transparency and it's been proven, it improves officer interaction with the public and public interaction with officers," says Lt. Amoroso. 

It's may not be changing how officers already police this community but, it is offering a different insight.
 
"Officers see the tide has turned they are asking for them they want them," says Lt. Amoroso. 

He says every uniformed officer will be required to wear a camera. All it takes is a click of a button and it will record every call and interaction when officers go out on the streets. It will then get saved to a server for two years. 

"It really provides a great tool that shows the great job our officers are doing and depicting what's going on on a call," he says.

People who live in the area think it's a good idea but, say the footage needs to be closely monitored. 

"I'm for it but, I think it needs to be regulated by a higher government just not the police department," says Alex Meynard, a San Luis Obispo resident. 

"People will feel more safe knowing that they know what the cops are doing," says Ramiro Ruvalcada, who is shopping in the area. 

"It's a good thing, it's a good step," says another man who did not want his name known. 

Police cars have cameras that can be moved around to record things happening outside. 

Lt. Amoroso says the body cameras will add another view and way of keeping documentation. 

"When an officer gets on shift they will sync the camera in the dock here and that syncs up to the car and the body system," he says. 

He says officers will be required to record all interactions and calls they go on. The only time they would use discretion is for privacy concerns like when talking to the victim of a sexual assault. 

They say if the footage is needed for ongoing cases in court, the footage will be saved for as long as needed. 

 


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