Lansing Police patrol officers add body cams

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LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – In his last State of the City address mayor Virg Bernero said it was a goal to have Lansing police officers wearing body-worn cameras.

He made it a top priority and today those cameras are being used by patrol officers in the city.

Bernero and Lansing Police Chief Mike Yankowski announced today that the city has purchased 130 body-worn cameras and related equipment.

What was the price tag? Cameras and other gear cost the city $181,000. That includes more data storage for the video that will be recorded.

“Body cameras are the next generation of technology that will help our police officers do their jobs more safely and more effectively,” said Mayor Bernero.

Chief Yankowski said about half of the officers are trained and using the cameras. He expects the remaining officers to be trained in the next few weeks.

The chief said the cameras are not a magic wand that will solve every case but will be useful in helping officers complete reports, make cases and get convictions.

He also adds that in most circumstances the video recordings will be kept for 30 days with traffic stop video held for 90 days.

Body-worn cameras will not be used to record sensitive information, such as interviews with victims of sexual assault.

The technology exists to have body-worn cameras turn on automatically when an officer activates the overhead lights on their police cruiser.

Yankowski said the department is in the process of having that technology installed on the body-camera system.

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