Newton adds police body cameras

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NEWTON, Kan. (KAKE) -

Newton's police officers now have body-worn cameras as part of their patrol uniforms.

They've actually been using them since early April, says Police Chief Eric Murphy but the department is just now publicly announcing the cameras.

Chief Murphy said,  "Our policy is we want to record all interactions with the public whether it's a suspect, a victim or whomever."

He said there's a growing expectation for police departments to have the ability to record video.  "The courts and the public are pretty much expecting us to stay up with technology, especially when it comes to video and recording."

Murphy said, "We were among the first departments in the state to use in-car video cameras."   He said, "Body-worn cameras were the next logical step for us."

He said the cameras, two Ethernet transfer stations and associated software were purchased with a $34,335 federal grant awarded to Newton last fall.