Is the "thin blue line" eroding in America's Finest City?

San Diego Police Chief Requests Body Cameras

By Megan Tevrizian
|  Friday, Feb 21, 2014  |  Updated 11:09 AM PDT
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On Wednesday, San Diego Police Chief William Lansdowne asked City Council to help purchase body cameras for police officers. Lansdowne says they will help the department track any racial profiling. NBC 7’s Megan Tevrizian explains how many cameras he wants and how much they would cost.

On Wednesday, San Diego Police Chief William Lansdowne asked City Council to help purchase body cameras for police officers. Lansdowne says they will help the department track any racial profiling. NBC 7’s Megan Tevrizian explains how many cameras he wants and how much they would cost.

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San Diego Police Chief William Lansdowne has a plan to combat racial profiling in the department.

Lansdowne has asked City Council’s Public Safety and Livable Communities Committee for body cameras. Lansdowne said the cameras will be mounted on the officer’s chest and will record video and sound.

"It would help us with the misunderstandings, with lawsuits, It helps us when we sit down with someone and they say, ‘what happened?’ We can show them an actual video of what happened. There are few things better than video or sound," Lansdowne explained.

To start, the police chief wants 100 cameras, which will cost the city of San Diego $200,000. Then, he wants to increase the amount. The total cost to the city will be $2 million a year.

Body cameras for police officers are already in the 2015 budget, but Lansdowne is asking the council to accelerate this.

A recent report indicated officers are not regularly asking for racial data at traffic stops, which is used to prevent profiling.

About 25 people addressed the council Wednesday, many saying they’ve been racially profiled.

Lansdowne says he’s committed to fixing this issue.
 

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