Police officers in eight Union County towns will soon be wearing body cameras while on duty.
It is part of a countywide program introduced by Union County officials Tuesday morning.
In the wake of recent high profile national stories about alleged police brutality, many in New Jersey law enforcement want to show exactly what happens to officers while on duty.
"If a picture is worth a thousand words, how much is a picture worth that has audio capabilities?" asks Elizabeth Police Director James Cosgrove.
Thanks to $750,000 in forfeiture funds provided by the Union County Prosecutor's Office and the New Jersey attorney general, 550 body-worn cameras will be provided to the officers. According to an attorney general directive, officers must physically press the button for the camera to begin recording during stops.
"It's constantly recording. It's retroactively recording 30 seconds prior, just video," says acting Union County Prosecutor Grace Parks. "When it turns on it will have that prior 30 seconds and it will start recording what's happening both video and audio."
Union County police officials say that this is the best way to bring officers and their communities together.
The eight towns in the county getting the cameras are Elizabeth, Plainfield, Linden, Scotch Plains, Roselle Park, Mountainside, Fanwood and Garwood. There are now about 30 police departments in the state using body cameras.