ShareThis Page
Penn Hills

Body cameras getting closer to reality for Penn Hills police officers

Dillon Carr
| Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018, 4:15 p.m.
Penn Hills officers this year expect to be wearing new body cameras like the one pictured here.
AFP/Getty Images
Penn Hills officers this year expect to be wearing new body cameras like the one pictured here.

Penn Hills police Chief Howard Burton expects soon to get something he's wanted for his officers for years: body cameras.

The municipal budget passed in December included $84,000 to purchase body cameras, nine laptops, four vehicle gun vaults and communications equipment. The bill for the body cameras for all 40 officers in the department would be about $50,000, Burton said.

The department received an $11,000 federal grant for cameras in 2016 and is waiting to hear whether it will get another $12,000 applied for in September through the same U.S. Department of Justice program.

“If we don't get it, we'll maybe buy a portion,” he said about the cameras.

Expanded use of body cameras by police departments nationwide started in early 2015 after an 18-year-old unarmed black man was shot and killed by a white officer in Ferguson, Mo., the summer before.

Burton said he's wanted his officers to wear the cameras since then but has had to wait for funding. He said the cameras are key elements for officers now.

“It's improved safety around the country,” he said. “These will help protect our officers by showing the public what kind of interactions police have on the streets … so they know we're doing the right thing. It's a plus for the public and the officers.”

Dillon Carr is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-871-2325, dcarr@tribweb.com or via Twitter @dillonswriting.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me