Body Camera Case Study - Washington Park Police, IL
Washington Park is a village in St. Clair County, Illinois, in the US, with a small, relatively poor population and above-average levels of crime. The police department have been working successfully with Reveal RS1-SX cameras and Digital Evidence Management System (DEMS) since Christmas 2013.
Officer James Boyd has been coordinating the project. He tells us how it has gone.
What are you trying to achieve with body-worn video?
For me, a body camera is a great tool for providing evidence to support my case and disprove allegations and complaints.
Has body-worn video worked for you?
Yes. As a result of using the body camera, we have been successful in obtaining felony convictions it would be difficult obtaining otherwise.
As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words.
How important has body-worn video become in your work?
The percentage of times I have used the camera in a case or for a report is as high as 95%.
For example: in May of 2014, a suspect was arrested for fleeing and eluding the Police. After the suspect was taken into custody and transported back to the police department for booking, the suspect destroyed and damaged property of the city and threatened to kill the arresting officer and his family.
As a result of the camera footage, the arresting officer was able to apply for, and obtain, three felony warrants against the suspect.
For example: in April of 2014, an officer arrested three individuals for obstructing and resisting arrest. As a result of the camera footage, the arresting officer was able to support the charges and disprove racial allegations.
How has the front-facing screen made a difference?
The screen has its advantages; sometimes, when suspects learn they are being recorded they entertain themselves for the camera. The advantage is the opposite - they learn they are being recorded and they behave better.
And the articulated camera head?
I find this feature to be a good tool for different situations and I use it often.
Is the easy one-touch report button helpful?
I find this feature to be a plus. When you’re in a split-second situation, it just takes one easy step to turn the camera on without interfering or distracting from the task at hand.
Have you used any other cameras? If so, how do Reveal cameras compare?
I did use another brand of camera before the Reveal camera. I like the lightness and portability of the Reveal cameras, and I find their simple use in operation better.
How have you found working with the people at Reveal?
The Company has always been very friendly and professional. The department is grateful for being able to test and evaluate the product.
How would you sum up your experience of the body-worn video?
The cameras have performed to our expectations and beyond. They have been helpful in the prosecution of crimes within the City of Washington Park.
Would you recommend Reveal and our products?
Yes - and I already have.