An image of a body camera. An image of a body camera.

Police departments receive state funds for body-worn cameras

Attorney General Letitia James has presented the Rochester Police Department and Monroe County Sheriff’s Office with funds to support body-worn camera programs.

In November, the Rochester Police Department received $104,450 for 70 body-worn camera systems and 15 body-worn camera docking stations. The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office received $59,694 for 30 body-worn camera systems and six body-worn camera docking stations.

The RPD body-worn camera program began in 2016, according to the city’s website. In order to improve police-community relations, Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren, working in conjunction with the Rochester Police Department, created the RPD Body-Worn Camera initiative.

The funds were provided by the attorney general’s CAMS (Capture an Account of a Material Situation) program, which is awarding 13 law enforcement agencies around the state with more than $1 million to purchase 891 body-worn cameras and 321 body-worn camera systems.

The CAMS program was launched in July 2018 and is funded with money recovered from organized crime take downs carried out by the attorney general’s Office.

“Body-cameras are commonsense tools that protect both civilians and law enforcement,” James said in a Nov. 1 press release. “They are critical for transparency and accountability, but too often law enforcement agencies do not have the resources needed to outfit their officers. These funds will go a long way in increasing public safety, and I am proud to play a role in protecting communities in Rochester and across Monroe County.”

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