West Carrollton City Council votes to equip officers with body cameras

West Carrollton — The West Carrollton Police Department will become the latest Miami Valley law enforcement agency to add body cameras, after a vote by city council Tuesday night.

Council voted unanimously to spend approximately $151,000 over the next five years to outfit West Carrollton officers with the cameras, which the Chief said should help better document encounters between police and citizens.

“It just gives us one more tool that we can use to support the officers’ words and actions,” Chief Doug Woodard told City Council just prior to the vote.

On top of Miami Valley law enforcement agencies that already had body cameras, numerous have chosen to add the equipment following protests and demands for policing changes in the summer of 2020. Among them: Dayton, Montgomery County, Miami County, Huber Heights, Kettering, and Oakwood.

Chief Doug Woodard said, given the recent trend, “inevitability” was partially behind the decision.

“I was around when in car cameras came in to be,” Woodard said in an interview after city council’s decision, with News Center 7′s Sean Cudahy. “People started purchasing in car cameras. Next thing you know, the majority of departments have them … and if you didn’t, you were one of the few that didn’t. And I think that’s where body cams are headed now.”

He also believes the cameras will better shed light on encounters.

“We’ll be able to review (those) in depth a little more,” Woodard said.

West Carrollton Police have already begun some training on the devices through the vendor. Woodard estimates implementation could take two to three months.