Arkansas police department welcomes new technology - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Arkansas police department welcomes new technology

By Lauren Payne - bio | email feedback

WALNUT RIDGE, AR (KAIT) "Anytime you move, they're going to go with you," said Walnut Ridge Police Chief, Richy Thatcher.

Officers at the Walnut Ridge Police Department are  not just using technology, they're wearing it.

"This will tell the whole story, one way or another,' said Thatcher.

Chief Richy Thatcher is talking about tiny cameras that officers clip onto their shirts.

"They are not optional.   They are to be turned on anytime they are out of the car," said Thatcher.

The department got ten new cameras, one for each officer on the force.

"It's like I told the guys, it's going to benefit them more than they realize because you know, if we do get any complaints, it's just going to answer the question either way or another," said Thatcher.

"I said this is something we need.   It will give confidence to the public.   It will give confidence to our officers," said Thatcher.

Walnut Ridge Mayor Don House says the cameras cost the city about 115 dollars a piece.  He says it's a relatively small price for all the good they will do.

"It takes a major step in restoring confidence of our public in the police department," said House.

Along with further officer training and improving equipment, Mayor House says this is another step in the city's efforts to make the department one of the best in the region for a city it's size.  He adds a  local police force does affect the people they serve.

"They are guided by it, it has a lot of influence upon the children. It has a lot of influence on those who might want to grow  up and be a police officer.   We want to provide the ideal for them, the very best we can," said House.

Chief Thatcher says it's a small piece of technology to help move the department forward.

"They realize and see that we're trying to benefit them as much as we are the community," said Thatcher.

Copyright 2011KAIT. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly