Laurel Police Department upgrading equipment

Laurel Police Department upgrading equipment

Laurel, Miss. (WDAM) - The Laurel City Council voted Tuesday to give the Laurel Police Department roughly $278,000 dollars for upgrades to its equipment.

Most of the funds, $258,000, will go toward upgrading Tasers and body cameras over the next five years.

The other $20,000 will be for a firearm trade-in program to get every officer a new handgun.

“I think the administration and the council sees that these are very good tools, these body cameras and the Tasers," Laurel Police Chief Tommy Cox said. "I don’t see how any department goes without body cameras this day in age. It’s just great to have the financial backing to get the tools you need to do the job.”

The tasers will be phased in until the end of the year.

As for the firearms, they will be switched over within the month.

Cox said that the body cameras are better than the dashboard cameras that LPD used in the past.

“We use them in a variety of ways, evidence, every use of force is reviewed via body camera," Cox said. “To refute false complaints against officers, or maybe uphold a complaint against an officer. Anytime there is a complaint against an officer we also use them. So, they get used in a variety of ways, training, they’re an invaluable tool.”

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