City of Florence discusses body camera adoption - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

City of Florence discusses body camera adoption

Source: Ken Baker WMBF News Source: Ken Baker WMBF News

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - The City of Florence will soon have a little more than half of its officers fitted with body cameras.

The move comes at a cost, but city leaders are trying to limit the cost to tax payers.

“Everybody thinks that body cameras are going to be the end all for law enforcement, when it comes to showing absolutely everything. It’s actually just another tool,” City of Florence Police Chief Allen Heidler said.

It’s that new tool that is costing cities and municipalities money.

Chief Heidler said the department has already budgeted $10,000 to help with the purchase of the cameras.

The rest of the money needed could come from a grant in the amount of $23,000.

The grant is called the  Edward Byrne Memorial Assistance Grant.

It helps law enforcement agencies obtain resources.

“That amount will probably get us…the $10,000 around 11 or 12, the $23,000…23 or 25 or those cameras,” Chief Heidler said.

Right now, Florence police are currently testing out a body camera for the force.

“We are testing it in the training environment. We have some fairly intense training that’s going on this week so we are employing that right now,” Chief Heidler said.

Already, the department uses voice recording when officers are working cases and the storage needed for that device is compatible with the storage needed for the soon coming cameras.

“The servers that we are using to store the voice medium right now, should be able to accommodate that video media so we are looking at storage now being an issue initially,” Chief Heidler said.

The plan is to have those cameras purchased and on the streets by the end on the year.

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