St. Paul Police Department rolls out body cameras

- The St. Paul Police Department is rolling out body cameras to its officers.

By the end of the year, nearly 450 of its officers will be equipped with a device meant to capture everything they see and hear when responding to a call.

Tuesday marked the first round of a months-long body cam roll out.

"Overwhelmingly what we are hearing from our officers is that they want the camera, they look forward to it and they understand it's a reality," said Commander Axel Henry, who led the body cam rollout.

Eventually, St. Paul police hope to finish training and equipping over 500 of their roughly 600 person force with body cameras to wear on duty.

"Our policy is designed to make sure we are staying in front of things,” said Henry. “Our philosophy has been when in doubt record and when in doubt protect.”

St. Paul police now join Minneapolis police, who launched their body camera program in 2016.

St. Paul police say all officers are required to activate their camera before every call.

Both officers and community members hope the new technology will bring a new era of public trust.

"There really isn't anything we aren't willing to do if we think it is going to create a good relationship with our community and if this camera is a part of that, we are happy to do it,” said Henry.

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