by Ivan Foley
Thanks to a donation from Platte City, the Weatherby Lake police officers will soon have body cameras.
A decision to donate nine no longer used CopVu body-worn cameras to the Weatherby Lake Police Department was supported by the Platte City Public Safety Subcommittee Monday night.
Platte City Police Department recently purchased upgraded body cameras, known as the WatchGuard Vista. With that purchase, the CopVu equipment is no longer of use to Platte City.
Gary McMullin, chief of police for Weatherby Lake, population 1791, requested that the CopVu cameras be donated to his department.
The CopVu cameras are a server-based system, according to Carl Mitchell, police chief for Platte City. Mitchell says Platte City upgraded its technology security by eliminating severs and going to work group/cloud-based systems.
Mitchell says Platte City police will maintain the video library from the CopVu cameras on portable external hard drive, complying with its current records retention.
“Although the CopVu cameras are obsolete for our purposes and some of them are showing their age with slightly reduced battery lives, they should function properly until Weatherby Lake Police Department can obtain the funds to replace them,” Platte City Police Lt. Al DeValkenaere said.
“Due to the fact the CopVu cameras are no longer supported by WatchGuard they have little value,” DeValkenaere said. “Donating them to another police agency would have no financial impact on the City of Platte City.”
McMullin, the Weatherby Lake police chief, said in a letter to Platte City officials that his department currently has no working officer-worn cameras.
“I believe the donation of your cameras to our department will aid in office safety and increase the accuracy of recalling our interactions with the public,” McMullin wrote.
“If awarded the cameras, we will strive to pass them on to another law enforcement agency when they are no longer needed by our agency,” McMullin added.
The donation would include cameras, shirt clips and chargers.
Platte City’s Board of Aldermen will take final action on the recommendation at its meeting later this month.