Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti announced a plan to purchase body cameras for every Los Angeles police officer during a press conference on Tuesday.
Garcetti said he plans to set aside money in the city’s next budget to fund the purchase of 7,000 body cameras for LA police officers as part of a plan to equip every officer with the technology. The decision comes amid ongoing controversy over several high-profile police killings that have led to heightened scrutiny of policing practices nationwide.
The mayor’s office said the city has been working towards adopting the technology for over a year. Earlier this year, LAPD had its officers test different brands of cameras for a 90-day trial period and reached out to other law enforcement agencies already using body cameras for input, according to the department.
“With this program, L.A. will be a national leader in the use of these cameras,” the mayor’s office said in a statement. “While events in Ferguson and President Obama’s call have brought this issue recent national attention, Mayor Garcetti’s administration has been moving forward on the use of on-body cameras for over one year.”
Garcetti said the contract negotiated between the department and Taser will cost in the “high single digit millions” and that part of the funding will come from a National Institute of Justice research grant and over $1 million in private donations raised by LA Police Commission president Steve Soboroff. The city will also apply for federal funding from a community policing reform recently proposed by President Obama.
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