Ames Police Deploy Body Cameras

AMES, Iowa -- The Ames Police Department has begun the process of deploying body worn cameras. The department says it's taking the next thirty days to train and get used to the new devices.

Ames PD says when it comes to body cameras, they held off for quite a while, and they are a little bit late to the game.

"Camera technology has improved greatly in the last four or five years," said Commander Geoff Huff. "We actually started this process about four years ago, looking at body worn cameras, and the technology now has caught up to the point where it's a good value for the money. The systems are really reliable now.  They`re rugged and they seem to work really well, and I think it's kind of the right time now."

Commander Huff says while the cameras won't be on all of the time, if you do interact with law enforcement, it's likely that you will be recorded.

But the police department does not want the cameras to make you feel uncomfortable interacting with officers.

"That`s really what we`re worried about, going forward," said Commander Huff. "So, we want people to be comfortable with it, but you know, police recording interactions is the standard now."

And while Ames PD is excited to have this new tool, they want to caution the public that there are limitations to what body cameras can do.

"As you can see, this camera`s right in the middle of my chest," said Commander Huff. "It doesn't mean that I`m looking that way. So, the video doesn`t necessarily catch everything an officer sees, and it's just one version of events, as well. It doesn't take the place of a good investigation, witness statements...so, I think some people think, well, we have video, so we know exactly what happened. That's not necessarily always the case."

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