Body cams on cops show things that could easily be missed by onlookers

Courtesy NBCDFW.com

Celina's police chief says after using body cameras for nine months, the investment has been a success.

"Our officers know that when they step out of the vehicle, everything they're doing and saying is being documented," said Chief Mark Metdker, who serves not only with the police but also as Celina's fire chief.

"I think the future of policing is transparency," he added. "Let's be as transparent as possible. We have nothing to hide."

Following that logic, the department released a video on its YouTube channel within the past week of an arrest at an alleged domestic disturbance where, police said, an officer was assaulted.

According to the department, it initially appears from the angle of the dash camera video that the officer jumps on the subject for no reason.

However, from the angle of the officer's body camera, it appears the man throws a punch at the officer's face before he is wrestled to the ground, subdued and arrested.

Metdker said the video shows the officer counseling the man, saying "you don't want to do this" as the suspect makes several attempts to get away.

"It shows every angle and every aspect of what the officer sees," Metdker said.

Metdker added the department posted the video online because, by definition, it is already part of the public record.

Celina enforces a policy that every time an officer makes contact at a call, he or she must automatically activate his or her body camera.


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