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Council approves body cameras for TPD
body cameras
Officers in the Turlock Police Department will soon have a new piece of equipment with them out on patrol — body cameras (Photo contributed).

The Turlock City Council voted unanimously at the June 11 meeting to approve the purchase of body cameras for use by the Turlock Police Department.

The cameras will be purchased from Axon Enterprises and will include all the associated hardware, software, cloud storage for the data, as well as tasers. The cost will be around $900,000 over a five-year period and will come from the department’s share of Proposition 172 funds and the Small Equipment Replacement and Realignment Fund. The City’s General Fund will not be used.

The 82 cameras the department will be purchasing are with the most advanced technology available, said Turlock Police Chief Nino Amirfar. The system has gunshot detection, which will automatically start the recording from 30 seconds prior and will alert dispatch and command staff with the GPS location.

The camera systems are also equipped with Bluetooth, so images will be viewable on the officers’ cell phones in real time.

The data generated by the body cameras is encrypted and cannot be altered, as such it can be used to document crime scenes and used in court proceedings.

Amirfar said he likes the transparency the cameras will create for both the public and the officers.

“Trust is something you can never take for granted,” Amirfar said. “It takes you years to earn it and a millisecond to lose it.

“The cameras keep everybody in check,” he said.