Las Cruces police officers to be outfitted with body cameras - Albuquerque Journal

Las Cruces police officers to be outfitted with body cameras

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — The Las Cruces police department will be the latest law enforcement agency in New Mexico to outfit officers with body cameras in the coming weeks.

Police officials said they expect to put 72 cameras on traffic and patrol officers.

“Our primary focus with this new camera program is to protect the officer,” Deputy Chief Justin Dunivan said. “Our second thing is to protect the department, reduce overall liability and enhance our accountability.”

Some officers have been using the cameras, which are only about 3 inches tall and weigh less than an ounce, for the past year. They can be worn on shoulder lapels, helmets and sunglasses.

The 72 Taser Axon Flex cameras cost about $320,000, Dunivan said. The department is using money from its general budget and will spend it over a five-year period, the Las Cruces Sun News reported.

Las Cruces police have tried using body cameras since 2011. The department was using 120 lapel cameras made by surveillance company Scorpion in 2012 until officers reported technical issues, Dunivan said. The police then began testing different camera systems in January 2014 and settled on the Taser Axon Flex cameras.

City and police officials are still determining policy on camera use and how long to store video. Officers are required to download video at the end of a shift to an online data management system. For now, they will save footage even after they exceed storage space.

“They will save it. But we have to make a decision on what video needs to be destroyed,” Sgt. Rob Benavidez said. “And we have to follow New Mexico state retention laws when it comes to physical evidence, video evidence and records recording.”

Calls for body cameras have risen in several U.S. cities where high-profile fatal shootings involving police occurred. The Albuquerque Police Department, which was the subject of a scathing U.S. Justice Department report last year, now requires all officers to wear lapel cameras in interactions with the public. In its report, the Justice Department blasted Albuquerque police’s rollout of the cameras, saying it had been so hasty that officers had not been properly trained.

 

Home » ABQnews Seeker » Las Cruces police officers to be outfitted with body cameras


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

taboola desktop

1
Calf Canyon/Hermits Peak Fire now largest wildfire in state ...
ABQnews Seeker
The teams battling the Calf Canyon/Hermits ... The teams battling the Calf Canyon/Hermits Peak Fire said Monday morning that the blaze has grown to more than 298,000 acres, making it the ...
2
Additional floors will allow for UNMH's future expansion
ABQnews Seeker
New tower will house updated surgical ... New tower will house updated surgical rooms
3
Buffalo shooter targeted Black neighborhood, officials say
Nation
The white 18-year-old who fatally shot ... The white 18-year-old who fatally shot 10 people at a Buffalo supermarket researched the local demographics and arrived a day in advance to conduct ...
4
Zanetti leaning on military lessons in governor's race
ABQnews Seeker
NM should pursue both high-, low-tech ... NM should pursue both high-, low-tech solutions to economic challenges, says GOP hopeful
5
Pets aren't toys; they're part of the family
Blogs
As COVID-19 concerns have waned, many ... As COVID-19 concerns have waned, many pets are losing their homes and humans
6
As winds relent, fire grows by 9K acres
ABQnews Seeker
Officials: Chance for thunderstorms Monday Officials: Chance for thunderstorms Monday
7
Stage set for the return of Summerfest
ABQnews Seeker
Summerfest and Freedom 4th are back. ... Summerfest and Freedom 4th are back. ...
8
Can ABQ crush speeders' cars? It did $1M in ...
ABQnews Seeker
Forfeiture Act determines legal framework for ... Forfeiture Act determines legal framework for impounding cars
9
Colón: Getting people to sit down together can solve ...
2022 election
Community, transparency and accountability focus of ... Community, transparency and accountability focus of Attorney General candidate's goals if elected
10
Torrez: Willingness to ruffle feathers is an asset, not ...
2022 election
Attorney General candidate has created new ... Attorney General candidate has created new ways to combat crime as a career prosecutor and DA