Body cameras being considered for all Massachusetts police officers

Privacy, financial concerns may come into play when considering program

BOSTON (WWLP) – State lawmakers and local police departments want to strengthen community trust, and the use of police body cameras could play a role in that effort.

The Legislature’s Committee on Public Safety is considering a bill that would mandate body cameras across Massachusetts. The Boston Police Department is in the process of rolling-out a six-month pilot program to see whether body cameras would be effective and worth the expensive cost.

Body cameras are used to record video from a police officer’s perspective. There has been an increased call for the expanded use of body cameras following a series of high-profile deadly confrontations between civilians and the police.

Boston Police Commissioner William Evans told state lawmakers that he is worried about privacy when recording both citizens and law enforcement officers.

“Before the city can commit the financial resources to the department-wide program, the mayor and I must feel assured that implementing the body camera permanently is in the best interest of the city as a whole,” Evans said.

Body cameras can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to more than $1,000.

Locally, the town of Amherst has implemented a police body camera program.

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