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City Considering Body Cameras For Cops


Due to the Monday President’s Day Holiday, The Oakdale City Council will hold its meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 16.

The agenda that was released on Feb. 13, the council plans to discuss acceptance of a spending plan for the Supplemental Law Enforcement Services Funding (SLESF) Grant.

The City of Oakdale is eligible for $100,000 in 2014-15 from the State of California under the Supplemental Law Enforcement Services Fund. The funding is designed for front-line law enforcement services which typically include community-oriented policing projects and special law enforcement activities that require use of additional police officers in specially targeted saturation areas. The funding is also available to purchase equipment to support front-line law enforcement operations.

According to the agenda, Chief Lester Jenkins is proposing that the city and police department consider outfitting frontline patrol officers and reserves with body cameras.

Other agencies, including the Modesto Police Department, that have implemented body mounted cameras and have reportedly seen a dramatic decrease in the number of citizen complaints. This is often since the facts of incidents are recorded and false complaints are chased away due to word circulating among the criminal community that the officers are recording all citizen contacts.

Chief Jenkins said that the cameras would require substantial data storage on the city’s systems and costs would also need to be applied to upgrade the servers’ capacities. He estimated a cost of approximately $50,000 to outfit the entire regular and reserve officer force.

Look for a full story in the Feb. 18 edition of The Leader