Area police agencies reimbursed for body camera purchase

Buffalo, Amherst, Niagara Falls Police Departments receive 442 body cameras

Mike Baggerman
November 01, 2019 - 2:46 pm

Body cameras used by Buffalo Police. November 1, 2019 (WBEN Photo/Mike Baggerman)


BUFFALO, N.Y. (WBEN) - Three local police departments were reimbursed $238,000 from the New York State Attorney General's Office for body cameras.

Attorney General Letitia James announced Friday that the Buffalo Police Department, Niagara Falls Police Department, and Amherst Police Departments were some of the local recipients that received the reimbursements through the CAMS program, which is funded with money recovered from organized crime takedowns by her office.

"The importance of body-worn cameras cannot be overstated," James said in Buffalo on Friday. "They are critical tools for providing accountability, transparency, and protecting public safety...The reality is that many local law enforcement agencies don't have the resources to purchase them. With cameras costing up to $1,000 each, agencies are finding it difficult to outfit their entire force."

Buffalo Police received $150,000 for 300 body cameras. Niagara Falls Police received $51,759 for 93 cameras while Amherst Police received $37,240 for 49 body cameras.

The Erie County Sheriff's Department is nearing the purchase of 209 body cameras after a committee meeting held Thursday. They did not receive funds from the state because they did not apply to it, according to a spokesperson for the attorney general's office. However, once they implement the program, they will be able to apply for it.

Funding for the body cameras does not come from the state budget.

All told, 13 law enforcement agencies in New York received funding from the attorney general's office.

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