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Sandwich police to upgrade squad car dash cameras; body cameras coming soon

The Sandwich Police Department expects to receive $120,459 in federal funding for upgrading the camera systems and data storage units in the department’s squad cars, with body cameras for officers to come soon after.

U.S. Rep. Lauren Underwood, D-Naperville, has helped the department secure funding through the Community Project Funding program.

The CPF allows members of Congress to request federal funding for specific projects that benefit communities they represent.

The department submitted a project titled Transparency Equipment Improvement to Underwood’s CPF program. The project asked for $120,459 to purchase in-car cameras for each of the department’s seven squad cars and a storage system for the data.

The squad car cameras and data storage system will be installed as the first phase of implementation. The storage system will hold data from all police department cameras, including body cameras that will be implemented soon after, according to the project.

The department is partnering with Axon, who will provide all of the new equipment, including the storage system and the future body cameras.

Bianchi said the storage systems for squad car and body-worn camera footage will be interoperable.

The project’s purpose is to help improve transparency, accountability, and safety within the department and for the Sandwich community, according to the request.

Underwood submitted a letter to the Congressional Committee on Appropriations requesting funding for the department on April 29.

Bianchi said Underwood has a great system in place making grants available and making her constituents aware of them.

Underwood traveled from Washington to Sandwich recently to meet with Bianchi and discuss the project and how the funding would be used by the department.

All police departments must have updated vehicle and body cameras by Jan. 2025 under the state’s SAFE-T Act.

Awarding of funding is contingent on the bill being passed through the Senate’s Committee on Appropriations.

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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