The Boston Police Department’s superintendent-in-chief, as well as seven other members of its command staff, will be trained on and equipped with body cameras as they patrol the city, the police commissioner announced Thursday.
Commissioner William Evans said he asked the officers to participate in the program to “demonstrate the department’s willingness to explore this new policing tool and to show his continued support for the officers who have been assigned to participate in the pilot program,” according to a statement released by the department.
The eight high-ranking officers won’t be considered part of the hundred slated to take part in the pilot program, Evans said, but added he felt that it was nevertheless important for his command staff to lead by example.
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“When I asked members of my command staff to volunteer to wear the cameras, they all stepped up,” Evans said in a statement. “I have the best department in the country and I am committed to getting this program started for the benefit of the community and my officers out there every day.”
The move comes on the heels of a lawsuit brought by the Boston Police Patrolmen’s Association, who are trying to stop the program — at least in its present form—from moving forward.
The program, initially described as a “voluntary” program in an agreement with the police union, sought no volunteers, prompting brass at the department to announce they would randomly assign the cameras to officers, prompting the lawsuit by the union.
The judge’s decision in that case is expected to be announced by noon on Friday.
Should the judge decide on behalf of the department, the pilot program could begin as early as Monday, NECN reported.