The University of Indianapolis Campus Police will begin implementation of a new policy requiring officers to wear body cameras. This policy was settled at the end of last year, and cameras arrived the third week in February.
According to the body camera policy outline document, the use of body cameras will provide documentation for law enforcement interaction with the public by providing recorded evidence of actions, conditions and statements that could be used for judicial or internal review or by the public through formal requests.
The document states that the primary function of the body cams is to be able to accurately document statements and events during the course of an incident. The data collected also may be used to determine the accuracy of a complaint.
The body cams will be worn during shifts and used to record traffic stops; pursuits and vehicle apprehensions; use of force situations, citizen contacts; statements made by suspects, victims and witnesses; Miranda warnings; interviews and more.
“They’re going to protect us, citizens, students and the community of UIndy,” said Lt. Hailey Padgett-Riley. “With everything going on in the media surrounding officers, we just want to do our due diligence.”
Sophomore communication major Ally Moyer said that she supports the use of the body cameras.
“It only makes sense,” Moyer said. “This way, all parties will be protected and the truth will surface.”
Community members are recognizing the importance of this new policy.
“With cases like Mike Brown and Eric Garner circulating in the media every so often, it eases my mind to know that cameras will now be involved,” said South side resident Shonna Steele-Edmondson.
Riley said there will be no trial period, and the use of the new body cameras is here permanently. Officers have been trained in the use of the cameras and began wearing them on Feb. 16.