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Public advocate: NYPD cops should wear cameras

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NEW YORK (MYFOXNY) -

In the aftermath of the death of Staten Island man Eric Garner at the hands of police, an incident that has created a major rift between officers and the community, Public Advocate Letitia James says it is time for NYPD patrol officers to wear cameras on their uniforms.

James is calling for a pilot program to outfit 15 percent of NYPD officers with cameras in precincts with the highest crime rates and complaints about police misconduct.

James and other proponents say cameras provide greater transparency. She says officers are more likely follow protocol if he or she knows an incident is being recorded. She also says the cameras protect police by preventing false accusations. They say it has resulted in a significant drop in complaints against police in other cities where it has been rolled out.

While many New Yorkers told us they are for the cameras, others were hesitant.

James estimates the pilot program would cost $5 million and a citywide rollout would cost $32 million. But she says it would actually save the city million in legal judgments.

The police department issued a statement about James' proposal.

"The NYPD is exploring the feasibility of camera technology that will outfit officers and/or equip department vehicles," Deputy Chief Kim Y. Royster said in the statement. "In the process of doing so, there are various technological, legal and logistical concerns that must be addressed before making a final decision."

 

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