Public Safety: Culpeper Police prepare to deploy body worn cameras

Courtesy photo.  Sergeant Norma McGuckin wearing a new body worn camera.
Courtesy photo.
Sergeant Norma McGuckin wearing a new body worn camera.

The Culpeper Police Department is committed to providing the highest quality police service to the community. As part of this commitment, the department has spent over two years testing,researching, and developing policy, for the implementation of body worn cameras.

The department is pleased to announce that with the support of the Culpeper Town Council, and the community, all uniformed officers will soon be actively using their issued body worn camera.

As the roll out of these cameras takes place the community is invited to communicate with the Police Department about the currently proposed policy and activation concerns.

The first opportunity for the public to view the camera and provide feedback will be at the joint Neighborhood Watch Meeting, scheduled for Oct. 27, at 7 p.m. in the Police Department Community room.

The second opportunity for public involvement will be Nov. 3 at 7 p.m. in the Police Department Community Room. The second meeting will be devoted specifically toward the Department’s body worn camera program.

In an effort to prepare for deployment, officers will be taking part in training related to Fair and Impartial Policing during the first week of November. All officers selected to be issued a body camera must attend this training. This program has become a national standard for agencies deploying body cameras.

The cameras, which are manufactured by Taser, International, will provide the public another measure of transparency with its department. This new technology will allow the officer, and the public, another level of protection that was not previously available. Officers will be able to record encounters with the public, allowing for accountability by both parties.

“This technology will help solve crimes, record and document evidence, and hold all parties accountable. This is a win for the community, made possible by the Culpeper Town Council’s approval of a budget that recognized the importance of this project,” said Chief Chris Jenkins.


Culpeper Police Department seeks Advanced Re-Accreditation Award

The Culpeper Police Department is scheduled for our on-site assessment beginning Sunday, Nov. 6 through Wednesday, Nov. 9 to examine all aspects of our department’s policies and procedures, management, operations, and support services.

A two member assessment team will verify that the Culpeper Police Department meets the Commission on Accreditation of Law Enforcement Agencies, lnc. (CALEA) required state-of-the-art standards is part of a voluntary process to maintain advanced accreditation – a highly prized recognition of law enforcement professional excellence.

The Culpeper Police Department received its initial accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, lnc. (CALEA) in 2005, and was re-accredited in 2008, 2011, and again in 2014.

As part of the on-site assessment, the department employees and members of the community are invited to offer comments at a public information session scheduled for Monday, Nov. 7 beginning at 6 p.m. in the Town of Culpeper’s Economic Development Center located at 803 South Main Street in Culpeper, Virginia. The session will begin at 6 p.m. and continue until all present individuals have had an opportunity to provide comments.

lf for any reason an individual cannot speak at the public information session, but would still like to provide comments to the assessment team, they may do so by telephone. The public may call (540) 727-3430 ext.5550 on Monday, Nov. 7, between the hours of 2 – 4 p.m.

Telephone comments, as well as appearances at the public information session are limited to 10 minutes and must address the agency’s ability to comply with CALEA standards.

For additional information or to obtain a copy of a specific standard contact Major Chris Settle, theDepartment’s Accreditation Manager at (540) 829-5516.

Anyone wishing to offer written comments about the Culpeper Police Department’s ability to comply the standards for advanced accreditation may send them to the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, lnc. (CALEA), 13575 Heathcote Boulevard, Gainesville, VA 20155 or www.calea.orq.