BPD instituting mandatory body cameras for 100 officers

BOSTON (WHDH) - A voluntary pilot program for Boston police officers to wear body cameras while on the job is now mandatory after no one volunteered.

The department will assign cameras to 100 officers for the pilot program, which requires the officers to wear the cameras for a six-month period. The officers were selected by a Northeastern University criminal justice professor, who is working with the department.

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said he believes the lack of volunteers does not mean the police are trying to hide anything.

“I think it’s the unknown,” said Walsh. “I think a lot of people want to know what body cameras do, how they add to policing, how they help policing, and I think there’s questions on both sides. And that’s why the pilot will give some of the answers.”

The Northeastern professor will review the program over the next six months to determine if it is worth getting cameras for all officers in the long-term. Those who called for body cameras said they are still concerned because the police department will let officers review the video before they write their report.

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