Newsroom - Police to test gun-mounted cameras in MN

Police to test gun-mounted cameras in MN

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/CNN) - A Minnesota police department is considering gun-mounted cameras.

They said the technology would help capture clearer footage of confrontations between suspects and police.

"The weapon-mounted camera is built so as soon as I take it out of my holster, it automatically comes on," said West Hennepin Public Safety Department Sgt. Rick Denneson.

The device eliminates the risk of the camera not being turned on and offers an unobstructed view.

"And then also a lot of times we'll see where an officer's hands or arms will come up in front of the camera and block that view as they hold the weapon in front of them," said Denneson.

Denneson is one of three officers with the West Hennepin Public Safety Department who will take part in a pilot program beginning in November.

The department was approached by Viridian Weapon Technologies to test their weapon-mounted cameras in the field.

One of the criticisms of the technology is that it doesn't capture the interactions that lead up to an officer drawing his or her weapon.

But Denneson said the cameras mounted in their patrol cars and the wireless microphones on officers' bodies provide that.

"I think it is better video at the higher use of force times, audio and video captured from a pretty much unobstructed view at the end of the weapon to see what's happening," Denneson said.

The technology costs about $500 per camera.

The company that makes the cameras said police departments in different states are also trying out the new technology.

Police to test gun-mounted cameras in MN., October 2017.

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