Aging Police Car Video Equipment Losing Evidence
OTTUMWA, Iowa (AP) — Aging video equipment in Ottumwa squad cars is routinely breaking down, costing authorities key evidence in drunken driving and other criminal cases, police contend.
Ottumwa Police Chief Jim Clark is calling for the department's entire camera system to be replaced.
There have been several instances in which police have lost key evidence from arrests because the in-car cameras failed, Clark told the Ottumwa Courier.
"The camera system breaks down while officers are relying on them to videotape what they're doing," Clark said.
The Ottumwa City Council will vote next week on whether to spend more than $21,000 for a server and related computer equipment for the police department's digital video recording system. The department also has a $30,000 grant from the Governor's Traffic Safety Bureau to buy the upgraded camera system for the cars. That grant becomes available Oct. 1.
The current systems in Ottumwa's police cars have been in use for 10 to 15 years, Clark said.
"Any department our size or larger has cameras," Clark said.
What's On KCRG