(CBS) — From police traffic stops to a turtle life-saving stop, Waukegan Police Sgt. Marc Jackson’s, Motorola Si500 body camera captures it all. His department is the first ever to use such cameras.
And he says people know they’re being filmed by the red flashing light.
“For sure. We’ve seen it first hand,” Jackson tells CBS2’s Suzanne Le Mignot in this original report.
“You can see their eyes look at the camera and they see themselves and all of a sudden, in a split second, they drop their aggression or hostility sometimes.”
The Waukegan Police Department has been the test site for the Motorola Si500 body camera for the past six months.
“A very strong collaboration with Waukegan Police Department, with various features and functionalities, that were unique and important to them,” said Ron Toth, senior manager of Motorola Solutions.
Officers can instantly play back video, to write reports. All audio between dispatch and the officer, is integrated into the video. Audio and video can never be erased. The Waukegan Police Department is the first in the world to use this technology.
“Our officer’s are mandated once they receive a radio call, to immediately activate the camera and not turn it off until they’re completed with the call,” Waukegan Police Chief Wayne Walles says.
All of the video shot by body cameras are uploaded by officers at the end of their shift via wifi. It all goes into the command central vault and everything is encrypted, for security.
This was an important next step for local officials, the city’s mayor says.
“We had to do something to establish our credibility and trust in our community and cameras themselves are one of those tools that we can utilize, to help our citizens understand and realize, that we are there, not to hurt them, but to serve them,”Waukegan Mayor Wayne Motley says.