Day Three of Buffalo Police Body Cam Testing

Department Update on Pilot Project Says Officers Pleased So Far

WBEN Photo/Tim Wenger


(WBEN)  On the streets of Buffalo today, 16 police officers  are are beginning to work out the bugs, evaluating the use of body cameras for the first time, as part of a two month project designed to test a possible vendor, before screening other equipment later this year.

"I think officers are open to it. The officers we trained are excited to test the technology," said Lt. Jeffrey Rinaldo, the department's public information officer in a Tuesday morning briefing, a few days after they began use of the cameras in a pilot project.

" It's  new technology  and with all new technology there are concerns. What is it going to be used for, how it is going to be used," Rinaldo said.  "But as we stressed to the officers, it is an evidence collection device. That's what it is. It is there to protect the officers, and it is there to protect the pubic. It is there to give an accurate unbiased depiction of what happened.

Training first began Saturday night, and was followed up by use of the cameras at Buffalo's St. Patrick's Day parade Sunday.

The 16 cameras will be used for two months, and then the same officers will begin to try equipment from a second vendor, Rinaldo said.  At the end of the four months, they will put together an evaluation panel, to decide whether to go ahead with the program and a specific vendor, with an ultimate decision being made by Police Police Chief Byron Lockwood

" It is s not the end all and be all. As we saw just in some of the video shot over the weekend, depending on the proximity of the officer to where the subject is , sometimes it can just be a black screen with audio. it is not video shot from ten feet away," he said adding that officers nonetheless seem to be pleased with the system so far.


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