Sep 13, 2022 - News

Rogers may require police to wear body cameras

Illustration of a police hat with a badge shaped like a video camera icon.
Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Rogers police department could be the latest to require its officers to wear body cameras.

The big picture: A growing list of police departments across the country are forcing the issue to increase police accountability.

  • Gov. Asa Hutchinson's task force on law enforcement, established in 2020 in the wake of George Floyd's murder, recommended that law enforcement agencies use body cameras and advocated for funding legislation to ensure that all front-line duty officers in Arkansas wear cameras by 2026.

What's happening: Updating the policy to require cameras is up for City Council approval tonight.

Context: Rogers, which is authorized to have up to 124 officers, is a little late to the party.

Other larger cities in NWA, including Fayetteville, Bentonville and Springdale, already require body cams, the public information officers for those departments confirmed to Axios. Bentonville public information officer Adam McInnis clarified that only patrol officers or those dealing with the public are required to wear cameras.

What they're saying: "We researched policies from several different CALEA (Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies) agencies," public information officer Keith Foster told Axios in an email. "We took sections from those policies that pertained to our needs and made the policy specific to Rogers."

What's next: The police department expects the cameras to cost $83,820, and plans to put them into use as soon as they arrive and the department has a supporting system in place, Foster wrote.

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