Registered Agency Profile: Olney Texas Police Department

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Registered Agency: Olney Texas Police Department

Agency Donation Effort Contact: Chief Barry Roberts

Link: Department Facebook

Number of Officers: 9

Body Camera Goal: 9

Click here to donate to this department

Why has your Agency decided to start a body camera program?
Chief Roberts: We’re a small town in central Texas. We’ve had major budget cuts due to drout conditions, so we don’t have the money for body cameras. We want to get body cameras for officer safety and to record all events our officers are involved in for court purposes to use in court along with our written testimony.

How do you believe a body camera program will benefit your officers, department and the community?
Chief Roberts: It helps our officers with everything that’s going on in the country today. The community will have more trust in us because we will have more documentation for review for the county attorney’s office.

Are there any situations where having body camera video evidence would have made a difference in court cases or complaints against your officers?
Chief Roberts: We had an incident where we had a suspect on the second floor of an apartment complex and he had been running away from our officer and jumped over the balcony railing. Some people thought he was pushed over the railing, but several witnesses came forward and said they saw him jump to get away from the officer and that our officer was several feet away from him. Had our officer been wearing a body camera, we would have had the whole thing on video and there would have been no question of what happened.

Does your department have guidelines for a body camera policy? If so, what would the policy be? When would officers be required to record, etc.?
Chief Roberts: We recently put a body camera policy in place that is the same policy approved by the International Association of Chiefs of Police.