Bowie Police Department introduces body cams for the first time

BOWIE, TX (KAUZ) - The Bowie Police Department is on the streets with a new piece of gear that they hope will make them stronger as a department.

The department has added 6 new body cameras to its fleet for the first time and officers say they're excited for the future.

Before lieutenant Kurt Berryman makes a traffic stop there is one more thing he has to do.
A small camera that clips on the outside of the uniform allows officers to have a more direct video view and syncs to the already used patrol cameras. Eventually, dispatch will be able to view where the officer is in real time when the cameras are activated.
It's something Berryman says has come a long way in his 30 years in law enforcement.
"Back when I started there wasn't such thing as video," said Berryman.  "You could arrest the bad guy and tell them what happened and they believed you.  Now, if you don't have the video of the event it's not as likely he'll be prosecuted."

With the click of a button both the body cam and the wider view of the patrol cam are activated.  Berryman said these cameras are better not only for the department, but the people they represent.
"I think it will help the officers be better officers with body language," said Berryman.  "Verbal commands they'll be more aware of the situation, same thing with the people that we deal with daily.  That they'll be more aware in their verbiage and their conduct will be a little more appropriate and make us all get along a lot better."

Berryman hopes to see more police departments use the "go live" feature in body cameras.