APD hopes to issue 1,300 body cameras to officers

The Austin Police Department is hoping to equip officers with body cameras. 1,300 of them, so it will go beyond those assigned to patrol.

It will extend to everyone in highway enforcement, organized crime and special operations. The city of Austin is providing APD $2.6 million for the first year of the project.

The department wants it's new system to activate when officers get out of their patrol cars, which is similar to how dash cameras work.

There are various choices as to how to mount the camera on the officer. From the center of chest, right of chest or an eye piece.

The devices will not have any special features to enhance the images that are recorded. The biggest concern right now in regards to these cameras is privacy.

But this year the legislature crafted specific legislation which would provide protection. APD hopes to select a vendor by next spring and to start purchasing body cameras by summer. The plan is to deploy 500 at a time. 

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