City council to discuss SCMPD's request for more body cams - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

City council to discuss SCMPD's request for more body cams

(Source: WTOC) (Source: WTOC)

The Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department is hoping to get more equipment for their officers.

They are trying to increase the number of officers with body-worn cameras.

Right now, 390 officers wear body cameras, and adding the additional 220 will expand that number to 610 officers outfitted with body cameras.

The department started providing body cameras and tasers for officers back in 2015. This was done to increase transparency and improve officer-citizen interactions and investigations.

The recent police department study released by Berkshire advisers suggest that better technology would help improve the department.

Even before the study was made public, SCMPD Chief Jack Lumpkin told us the technology with Metro PD was not the best.

"It takes improvement in staffing, improvement in technology, improvement in management and supervision. It's a cultural change. The technology in this police department is not what it should be,” Lumpkin said.

The estimated cost for the equipment is $485,825.88, and would be funded by the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistant Grant, which was awarded to SCMPD in 2016 and funds 50-percent of the costs.

This expansion will allow SCMPD to issue those body-warn cameras to all officers below the rank of lieutenant.

Savannah city council will discuss SCMPD's request for more cameras at their meeting on Thursday. 

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