Department of Justice Awards Over $500,000 to Oregon Law Enforcement Agencies for Body-Worn Camera Programs
Oregon Awards Part of Nationwide Effort to Help Law Enforcement Organizations Implement Body-Worn Camera Policies and Programs
WASHINGTON – On Monday, September 26, 2016, Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch announced awards to establish and enhance law enforcement body-worn camera programs across the United States. Four Oregon law enforcement agencies are among 106 state, city, tribal, and municipal law enforcement organizations to receive funding from the grant program.
Washington County, Marion County, the City of Hillsboro, and Portland State University will receive a combined $511,864 dollars from the Body-Worn Camera Program. The program was launched in 2015 in response to a recommendation by the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing. Research conducted by the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) has shown that law enforcement use of body-worn camera programs improve interactions with the public. Over a two-year period, BJA has provided over $41 million to body-worn camera pilot implementation programs.
Billy J. Williams, United States Attorney for the District of Oregon, commended the local recipients of program funding and other Oregon law enforcement agencies committed to leveraging technology to strengthen relationships with their communities. “The principles of community-oriented policing,” Williams said, “require those of us in law enforcement to seek out new and innovative ways to build accountability with those we serve. Body-worn cameras and the local policies and procedures supporting them are an important tool to increase transparency and improve evidence collection both in Oregon and across the country.”
“The body-worn camera federal grant program,” said Patrick Garrett, Washington County Sheriff, “will greatly help our organization test, develop, and implement body camera technology to enhance a deputy’s ability to gather evidence, increase transparency, and bolster public confidence. I am very grateful to the U.S. Attorney’s Office and Department of Justice,” Garrett continued, “for helping us implement this important program.”
“By outfitting our officers with body-worn cameras,” said Lee Dobrowolski, City of Hillsboro Police Chief, “we can demonstrate our commitment to transparency, build trust within the community, and document the good work our officers do every day.”
The Body-Worn Camera Program is funded under the Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP). OJP provides federal leadership in developing the nation’s capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.