Noblesville police officers to get bodycams by end of summer

NOBLESVILLE, Ind. — The Noblesville Police Department is now the latest department to announce they will move forward with body cameras for all officers this year.

“It’s a benefit to our officers, and to the community,” said Chief John Mann of the Noblesville Police Department.

All 95 officers in the department will start wearing body cameras this summer. They have the ability to turn on automatically, sending recordings directly to a cloud storage.

“It allows us to set when the camera comes on and off on certain runs, so it’s not dependent on the officer to remember,” Mann said.

The department is working on a list of runs where the cameras would be set to record, but the camera is automatically activated by lights and sirens as well. It also has a bluetooth sensor that attaches to the officer’s gun holster.

“The holster sensor is a game changer,” said Jason Dombkowski, Director of Law Enforcement Relations for BodyWorn by Utility, the company behind the camera. “It turns the camera on whenever a gun comes out of the officer’s holster.”

Dombkowski is a retired police chief from West Lafayette, and he knows from experience how the camera works. The cameras also have a pre-record feature, capturing two minutes of video before the camera is activated.

“The camera doesn’t lie,” Dombkowski said. “It keeps everybody honest and it documents for courts or evidentiary purposes, exactly what happened.”

Noblesville is the first department in the country to also launch active shooter technology with the cameras. It gives officers GPS coordinates and a floor plan of detected gunshots, while each body camera can be viewed live by the department.

It’s an important new tool for officers that will help keep them and others safe.

“They don’t deserve any less, and our citizens don’t deserve any less,” Chief Mann said. “We’re excited about this partnership and we’re excited about what we can bring to Noblesville.”

Chief Mann says he hopes the cameras will be up and running by the end of June, with the active shooter technology ready by the end of the year.

The cameras also have an “officer down” feature, sensing when an officer is hurt, and sending GPS coordinates to other officers on duty.