Police getting body cameras; new policies

Published 10:09 am Thursday, March 2, 2017

Police Chief Todd Penley told town board members and Attorney Hank Van Hoy last month to get used to hearing from him at town meetings.

The police department is updating – and creating – new policies, covering everything from officer behavior to how the department replaces officers.

Board members approved a physical fitness policy that will allow officers one hour on each shift to work out. The department is working with Gym 365 to allow a place for workouts. Officers only get that hour for physical fitness activities, and do not get it if needed on police business, he said.

“The benefit greatly outweighs the risk of worker’s compensation injuries,” Penley said.

Although not a requirement, the officers will be asked to keep a log of their physical fitness activities.

He also reported that the department has spent some $17,000 on body cameras for all officers, and training on those cameras has started.

“That’s a protection,” he said, “an accurate representation of what we actually do. In the long run, it’s going to be a benefit.”

The audio and video cameras would be used by all officers at any time they come in contact with the public, Penley said. Shift supervisors and office personnel will be responsible for maintenance of the recordings.