Essex County Sheriff's Office purchases 40 body cameras

Posted: Updated:

The Essex County Sheriff's Office has announced 40 officers will be outfitted with recently purchased body cameras.



NJ.com reports the equipment was purchased with $84,000 in asset forfeiture funds. Sheriff Armando Fontoura said Tuesday that the body camera system will be deployed immediately.



Sheriff's officers will be responsible for activating the cameras during traffic stops, arrests and searches.



Fontoura says the footage will be retained by police for a minimum of 90 days to follow operating guidelines set by the New Jersey Attorney General's Office.



He says the system protects officers from false allegations in addition to increasing department transparency.



A department spokesman says they receive an estimated 100 complaints against officers annually, most of which are ruled unfounded.



Fontoura called the purchase a "win-win" for officers and citizens.


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