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Akron, Ohio

Akron Awarded Justice Assistance Grant

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City of Akron Press Release
Published: 09-25-2015

AKRON AWARDED GRANT FOR BODY CAMERAS

City to receive $367,476 in federal funding to pay for body cameras for Akron Police Officers.

Akron, Ohio (September 22, 2015) –..

The U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Assistance awarded a grant of $367,476 to the Akron Police Department to fund the purchase and deployment of approximately 245 body-worn cameras for Akron police officers, over the next two years. The grant will require the City to provide matching local funds.

The City’s primary objective is to purchase and deploy these cameras over the grant period, while educating and engaging with the public and collaborating with community partners to formalize a policy on the use of the body-worn cameras. The City will be implementing this technology on those officers having continual, daily interaction with the public.

“This grant brings us one step closer to putting this important technology on the street on a significant scale,” Mayor Fusco said, “This is another fine example of our Akron Police Department creatively seeking out new ways to implement best practices and improve safety for both officers and the public. I applaud Chief Nice’s diligent efforts to acquire this funding and his efforts over the last few years to secure contracts to test body cameras from multiple providers, at no cost to the citizens.” Akron was one of only two agencies awarded funding in the State of Ohio, and one of only twelve mid-sized agencies awarded funding nationwide.

The City has been testing body-worn camera technology for months, and partnered with Kent State University to perform a controlled study to test the impact the cameras have on police complaints and crime statistics in the City.

Body cameras have been shown to reduce citizen complaints and uses of force while building community trust and increasing transparency. The City is working on a strategy to handle the substantial storage needed to store the data captured by these cameras, which is projected to be a large component of the overall cost of the body-worn camera program.

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