Body cameras make sense for police

The work of law enforcement officers is vitally important to everyone who lives in this community. Our town is fortunate to have an exceptionally professional Police Department.

The nature of the work police perform entails constant interactions with members of the public. When arrests or other incidents take place people who have been taken into custody or members of the public who observe the events sometimes allege that officers have behaved improperly.

Equipping police officers with body cameras is an excellent way to ensure that when questions arise there is a recording of what took place so a fair appraisal can occur after the fact. That can be crucial in determining the truth when various parties involved recall the situation differently.

The Fort Dodge Police Department has included in its budget request for the next year funding to begin the process of equipping its personnel with body cameras.

The Messenger strongly supports this expenditure. The highly professional police work that takes place locally means that complaints about officers are not common. Having body cameras can help guarantee that if a controversial situation should take place, however, it will be easier to determine what happened. This is of benefit to both members of the public and the hard-working officers who protect our safety.