Stanford PD begins wearing body cams

Published 2:59 pm Thursday, April 20, 2023

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STANFORD – Interactions with Stanford Police will now be on video as the department has officially rolled out new body cameras.

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SPD Police Chief Zach Middleton updated Stanford City Council members on the new cameras during the council’s March 9 meeting.

“We’ve been doing a lot of test videos to adjust the camera angles and see what’s best,” Middleton said. “We’ve had some mock traffic stops and stuff going on.”

Middleton showed the council members a video on his cell phone of his body cam footage.

“I just uploaded all the other videos with conversation and talking,” he said.

SPD Captain Ryan Kirkpatrick said the cameras record video continuously.

“So we’re getting that rolled out. Ryan’s done a lot of work on that the last few days,” Middleton said.

Video footage cannot be edited, he said.

Stanford Mayor Dalton Miller said officers are able to see their footage but they cannot do anything with it.

“Each officer can see what’s created,” Kirkpatrick said. “They can’t manipulate them, they can’t share them, they can’t do anything with them but they can view them.”

Miller said the city paid $56,285 for the cameras, equipment and five-year warranty.

“Can you inform the council what it would currently cost us to have those cameras?” Miller said.

Kirkpatrick said the new pricing for the current package the city purchased is now an additional $25,000.

“…For five years we’re locked in for $25,000 less,” Kirkpatrick said.

The Motorola WatchGuard body cameras come with a five-year contract. After 36 months, the company will replace the equipment.

The contract also includes unlimited storage of evidence.

Council Member Jerry Wilkinson asked if each officer has their own camera.

“Yes, you don’t have to swap them out,” Middleton said. “Everybody’s got one and they have it with them at all times. We have a docking station there and that’s how they interchange information, but their camera is theirs.”

As soon as officers start their shift, the cameras start rolling, he said.

“They have batteries that you can take off and some of the batteries stay on the docking station so they’re always charged,” Middleton said.

Officers said the body cameras will help tell the full story of police interactions and bring about a more positive perception of local police.