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SALT LAKE CITY — Mounted on the side of a pair of sunglasses is what Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank says is the future of police work.
The body cameras work like dash cameras already in police cars — they they'll provide an eye-level view of an officers one on one interaction with the public. Burbank says the body cameras are the "wave of the future" when it comes to police work and transparency.
"What better way to document the entire event then an officer wear a camera that sees what the officer sees?" Burbank said.
If Chief Burbank gets his way, these tiny, weightless cameras will soon be on every police officer in the state.
"If Salt Lake City goes this direction, if any agency goes this direction, the expectation is going to be in my mind, that everyone move in this direction," Burbank said.
Burbank says body cameras will document officers' actions as they perform patrols, investigate crime scenes and serve search warrants.
With the camera mounted at eye level, the recording will provide an accurate real-time record of what happened.
He says not every officer likes the idea, but these days officers are already being recorded by cell phones and laptops, and it's better to have their own proof of what happens on the street.
"This is going to demonstrate the things we're doing good," Burbank said. "Sometimes it's going to catch us doing things improperly, but for the most part it is going to show we do an outstanding job."
The cameras run about $1,000 each, plus the cost of storing the footage, so it's going to take time to get them to all officers. Some motorcycle officers with the department are already wearing them.