Feds sending money to midstate police department for body cameras

Written by Ben Allen, General Assignment Reporter | Sep 23, 2015 4:31 AM

Photo by Jeremy Long -- Lebanon Daily News

(Carlisle) -- A federal program to fund body cameras for police officers is giving money to one department in the midstate.

Carlisle Police Chief Stephen Margeson says body cameras will help both officers and the public.

It'll be easier to determine whether an officer violated department policy, but the video also could disprove some citizen complaints.

Margeson says the cameras also might increase public trustin the department.

The $43,000 federal grant comes from the U.S. Department of Justice.

Margeson says the move will save the borough money.

"Without the grant, unfortunately it would've been totally, 100% our own Carlisle Borough general fund funding for police equipment," says Margeson.

Margeson expects the money to pay for most of the startup cost of 30 cameras and data storage.

"It will certainly cover the majority of the cost of the actual hardware itself, of the camera units, and we intend to outfit every one of our officers with body cams."

He hopes to equip officers with the body cameras by early next year. He's not sure how much it will cost to archive the footage, and is still working on a policy for public access.

North Cornwall Township, Lebanon County officers already carry body cameras, and Gettysburg is buying them as well.

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