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BJA-FY21 Body-Worn Camera for City of Port Jervis, NY Police Department

Award Information

Award #
15PBJA-21-GG-04402-BWCX
Location
Congressional District
Status
Open
Funding First Awarded
2022
Total funding (to date)
$18,381

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $18,381)

The Port Jervis Police Department seeks a matching grant to assist in the purchase, installation and deployment of body worn camera technology for (28) sworn police officers providing police services and community interactions in the City of Port Jervis, New York.   Officers wearing body worn cameras will record daily interactions with the public to provide documentation of police services to increase public transparency and provide objective evidence during police-citizen encounters. The recordings obtained from body worn cameras will enhance the department’s ability to gather evidence, investigate crimes and hold offenders accountable making our community safer. 

In 2021, the City of Port Jervis Police Reform Committee engaged in a series of community-based sessions and identified the implementation of a body worn camera program as a recommendation to increase transparency and build trust.  

Police officers and the members of the public are within the geographic jurisdiction of the City of Port Jervis, New York.    The department serves an urban population of 8,558 persons that is racially and ethnically diverse.  Currently, 22.9% of our residents are impoverished while 61% are of low-to-moderate income.  Our community is located at the juncture of the states of New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania with the City of Port Jervis serving as the largest urban center within the Tri-State region.  The geographic location of our community in relation major urban centers including New York City, has increased the level of illicit narcotics sales and gang activity in our community. 

A disproportionate number of crimes and victimization are related to illegal narcotics sales and use.  Interactions in the field with officers and residents coupled with the increased need to enhance trust and transparency necessitates the implementation of a body worn camera program to document these interactions and information obtained during investigations.   

The PJPD researched and identified a body worn camera product produced by Axis, as an effective program for this new implementation program.  Cameras, system controllers, charging and docking stations, camera mounts, data retrieval, storage and training are required to fully implement this program.  

Our goal is to issue body worn cameras to each police officer engaged in primary policing activities.  However, the capital costs for purchasing camera infrastructure have proven quite prohibitive. This funding opportunity will assist the city in obtaining the financial resources needed to launch a body worn camera program to foster trust, accountability, and respect making our community safer for our residents.

Date Created: December 17, 2021