FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) — For the first time in history, Kentucky State Police troopers will be equipped with body-worn cameras, as many local law enforcement agencies across the state, to help increase officer safety and public trust.
The new integrated video recording system will be distributed to approximately 780 sworn personnel.
“These recording devices will provide protection to our troopers and officers by documenting exactly what happens during a situation,” said Gov. Andy Beshear. “KSP is committed to being the best, and to doing things right. I commend them for their transparency.”
Immediately following the enactment of the new state budget, KSP evaluated available systems and conducted extensive testing, which included defensive tactics drills, firearms simulations, live fire trainings and typical day-to-day trooper duties.
KSP selected the Motorola M500 Integrated System, which includes a V300 body-worn camera, audio recording device and in-car video with high-definition cameras, which will record a forward dash view and the rear passenger compartment of the patrol vehicle. The recorded video and audio are automatically uploaded to a virtual storage location, decreasing troopers’ time on administrative functions.
“When the Governor’s budget allocated funds for an integrated video system, we realized the need to carefully test and evaluate the best equipment for us,” said KSP Commissioner Phillip Burnett Jr. “KSP plans to deploy the Motorola system in all cruisers by the end of 2023, beginning with newly issued cruisers first. Troopers assigned to those cruisers will receive the corresponding body worn cameras at that time.”
Documenting trooper interactions in the field allows KSP leadership to investigate grievances against officers and can be used in refining techniques taught to cadets at the KSP academy.
“Public safety is fundamental to creating a better Kentucky for all of those who choose to call the commonwealth their home. These devices demonstrate to the public that reviews of law enforcement activity will be thorough and transparent, thereby strengthening public trust in law enforcement,” stated Justice and Public Safety Cabinet Secretary Kerry Harvey.
KSP will hire 28 civilian employees to assist in documentation, system maintenance and archival of video footage captured through the integrated video recording system.