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Manitou Springs police adding body-worn cameras to uniforms next year

December 28, 2017 Updated: December 28, 2017 at 9:24 pm
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photo - Courtesy of Manitou Springs Police Department/Facebook
Courtesy of Manitou Springs Police Department/Facebook 

Manitou Springs police are adding body-worn cameras to their uniforms next year, falling in line with other county agencies already equipped.

The city awarded the Police Department $27,000 to outfit its 17 officers, including Chief Joe Ribeiro. It was approved as part of the 2018 budget and passed on Dec. 5.

Ribeiro said the cameras have long been a priority for many of the same reasons other agencies have added them to their uniforms: They can protect officers, support investigations and validate complaints.

"It's an opportunity to gather one more piece of evidence," Ribeiro said.

The department will start soliciting for bids after Jan. 1, Ribeiro said. Rollout will not come until "quite some time after," he said.

The department is still drafting its policy for when the cameras should be used.

Because of the department's small size, Ribeiro said he expects to be more "agile" in avoiding some of the difficulties that stalled implementation in the Colorado Springs Police Department and the El Paso County Sheriff's Office.

Manitou will be purchasing equipment that does not require a uniform change and will seek a vendor that offers cloud-based storage, Ribeiro said.

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