HIGH POINT, N.C. — The High Point Police Department has begun to give its officers better technology to deal with the 21st century challenges that officers face.
That help is in the form of new body cameras for the 135 police officers currently on staff.
The body cameras were part of a $1.38 million budget proposal the city approved for the department to update their cameras system.
So far 15 of the cameras have been assigned to 15 officers, with the additional 120 either at the department being set up or being shipped.
High Point Officer David Rosser was among the first to receive the new body cameras. He said, “it makes me much more confident because I know all of the actions I make are being recorded.”
The cameras are different than the ones currently owned by the department, because of the range of view the lens has, and the microphones capture clearer audio.
“Now I’m able to show it first hand, this is what happened. This is what I did, this is what other people have done, it just shows it a little bit more clearly,” Rosser said.
High Point Pastor Orrick Quick said he sees the cameras as being a huge first step in the right direction toward racial equality and building trust with police officers. “Cameras were designed to tell the truth,” he said.
Quick has been a loud voice in the community and spent the summer heading up marches in honor of George Floyd and other individuals who have died in police custody.
“It tells the truth whether the officer was wrong, or the individual was wrong. Because if you’re wrong, you’re just simply wrong.”
The pastor said, from his point of view, the addition of cameras has begun to bring truth into light with police investigations.
Truths that he fears will only be known if the cameras work properly.
“There is concern in the ability for these body cameras to be removed or to be covered up because that has been one of the biggest issues for body cameras before,” he said.
High Point Police Public Information Officer Lt. Matt Truitt explained that the cameras roll consistently regardless of whether an officer hits the record button.
Once the body cameras are brought back to the department, the videos will be uploaded into a data server for access whenever needed.