City of Carbondale, Illinois
July 20th, 2023
Body Worn Cameras
For Immediate Release –
Carbondale – The City of Carbondale Police Department is proud to announce the implementation of a new body-worn camera initiative aimed at enhancing transparency, accountability, and community trust. This initiative represents a significant step forward in our commitment to maintaining the highest standards of professionalism and integrity. The Department’s commitment to this initiative is providing for implementation 1 ½ years ahead of the state mandate.
Body-worn cameras have become an essential tool for law enforcement, providing an objective and unbiased record of interactions between officers and members of the community. The deployment of body-worn cameras will provide a comprehensive review of encounters between officers and members of the public.
There are numerous benefits of body-worn cameras. The cameras promote transparency by capturing an accurate account of events, reducing disputes about the facts of a situation. The footage collected also aids in the investigations, providing important evidence that can support criminal prosecutions or exonerate individuals who have been wrongfully accused. Most of all, body-worn cameras have shown to positively influence officer behavior, reinforcing adherence to departmental policies and professional standards. Research indicates that body-worn cameras also result in increased civility toward officers, fewer officer complaints, increased oversite of officer actions, enhanced training opportunities for officers, and a reduction in use of force incidents (see research PDF at https://www.ojp.gov/pdffiles1/nij/252035.pdf).
As part of this new initiative, all officers within the Carbondale Police Department will be equipped with body-worn cameras during their interactions with the public. This comprehensive deployment ensures that a vast majority of encounters will be captured, fostering increased trust and accountability.
The Carbondale Police Department has implemented a stringent policy that has been reviewed and approved by the Bureau of Justice Assistance to govern the use of body-worn cameras, ensuring compliance with privacy expectations and safeguarding the rights of those recorded. Officers have received thorough training on the proper use, activations, and handling of the cameras to help ensure consistent and reliable use of this technology. The policy can be found on the Carbondale Police website, www.carbondalepolice.com.
The Carbondale Police Department is committed to regularly reviewing the effectiveness of the body-worn camera program and making any necessary adjustments to further enhance its positive impact. The Department also remains steadfast in our mission to serve and protect the Carbondale community. We believe that the implementation of the new body-worn camera initiative will foster accountability, enhance public trust, and ultimately contribute to safer and more secure neighborhoods in the community.
Chief Stan Reno said, “I am extremely proud of the work our Department has done to implement the body-worn camera program. We sought input from community stakeholders, consulted with the Bureau of Justice Assistance, worked with the Police Union and we continue to keep the best interest of the Carbondale community in mind as we embrace this new technology. I am confident this initiative will enhance our police services and help keep our community safe.
The mission of the Carbondale Police Department is to work in partnership with our community to preserve life, protect human rights, protect property and improve quality of life by providing police service to all in a fair, sensitive, and professional manner.