Tiffin Police looking to upgrade dash cameras

Tiffin Police looking to upgrade dash cameras

TIFFIN, OH (Toledo News Now) - In light of the recent events in Ferguson, Missouri, the Tiffin Police Department is looking into upgrading its police cruiser dash cameras to leave no doubt as to what happened at a crime scene.

Tiffin Police installed dashboard cameras in their cruisers four years ago, but with the fast progress of technology, those are already out of date.

Tiffin Police Chief Frederick Stevens brought footage from the current cameras to the mayor to show the need for an upgrade.

"It's very unclear," said Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz.  "You can get big picture things, you can see a car has been stopped and what color it is.  But try to zoom in and see the details of what is going on, good luck with that."

Mayor Montz says he hopes the current video quality can be replaced with HD video from a Watch Dog dash camera system.  On top of improved low-light quality, the audio would also be much clearer.

Under the current cameras, Tiffin Police need to manually start recording every time they make a stop.  The new system would record at all times.

The improved cameras would help keep a clear record of what actually happens in the line of duty.

"What we're trying to do is eliminate some of those loopholes, some of those questions concerned citizens or some defense attorneys in court would question us on why the video or audio doesn't show this or doesn't see this," said Chief Stevens.

The new system would cost $50,000 to install in all eight police cruisers.  A third of that price tag would be paid by a city fund of drug and DUI fines.

The proposal is currently in the Materials and Equipment Committee of Tiffin City Council.

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