As police move to adopt body cams, storage costs set to skyrocket
The police department in Birmingham, Ala. has seen a 71% drop in citizen complaints — and a 38% drop in use of force by officers — since deploying 319 body cameras two months ago.
The cameras have been so effective that the department plans to buy another 300 cameras from Taser International.
“The chief’s goal is to get a camera on everybody who wears a uniform,” said Capt. William Brewer, who heads up Birmingham Police Department’s Technology Division.
Birmingham is among a growing number of police departments that are rolling out body cameras, spurred in large part by public pressure in the wake of a series of controversial police shootings of civilians. That pressure first began to mount nationally last year in the wake of the shooting death of Michael Brown, in Ferguson, Mo. Several other high-profile police shootings since Ferguson have added fuel to the body camera fire.