North Myrtle Beach police test body cameras

North Myrtle Beach, SC (WMBF) – After nearly two and a half years of testing, North Myrtle Beach is working to integrate body cameras in officer's daily routine.

The department has tested several different brands, and recently decided on the one they will use. Right now, only the alcohol enforcement team is using them.

Lance Corporal David King has been a part of the testing process and says the body cameras are far better than the dashboard cams most officers have.

"With this, we can go anywhere and everywhere with it," said Lance Corporal David King.

He says the biggest benefit to the cameras so far is the accountability.

"You're not just writing down a report anymore or having just a mobile vision that you may just hear audio, this is giving us the best of everything," he said.

North Myrtle Beach isn't the only local department with body cameras. Myrtle Beach police have had them for some time.

The department says the cameras are very helpful in looking into internal matters like officers using force or disputes with citizens.

"I think it changes their demeanor when they find out that they're actually face to face with a camera, in addition we're seeing complaints with officers go down," said King.

On top of body cameras, other departments around the area are working on other ways to watch both officers and those they serve.

Conway is currently working on putting up cameras around town, while Horry County is planning to add cameras to boat landings.

King says although it may seem like big brother is watching, the extra precautions are for your security. He says as long as everyone is in it for the right reasons, there should be nothing to hide.

"The way I always describe it to people I encounter is, it's for my safety as well as theirs, and it truly is," he said.

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