Ringgold police buy body cameras, ballistic vests with anonymous $22,000 donation
RINGGOLD, CATOOSA COUNTY -
The Ringgold Police Department will be the first agency in Catoosa County to use police body cameras on a regular basis, and it's all thanks to an anonymous donation from someone in the community.
"We will be, from what I understand, the first agency that will be able to fully deploy units for each officer, each officer will have their own designated camera assigned to them," said Asst. Chief Chad Cardin.
This holiday season Ringgold police officers have a new gift to add to their uniforms.
They'll now be wearing HD body cameras, a first for the department.
Body cameras are becoming more and more popular for police but it was never in the budget for Ringgold, until a man walked in recently with a $22,000 dollar check.
"He come in and said, "I want these guys to be protected, I want to make sure everyone can see things from their perspective' and handed us a check for the money," Cardin said.
The donor wants to remain anonymous but Asst. Chief Cardin said he is a well-known local, with a generous heart.
He said the cameras could help prosecute more cases and be the watchful eye out on patrols.
"To help with transparency, to help with being able to tell the story, it helps protect the officer," Cardin said.
Cardin hopes to have all officers wearing their cameras on patrol by the end of January.
In the mean time - they're working to set policies for officers, when to have the cameras rolling, and when the camera should be turned off.
"We don't want to violate anyone's Fourth Amendment rights by going into a home or something like that where they don't want it recorded so we're having to work through those legalities as well," Cardin said.
The $22,000 donation not only paid for the department's body cameras but there was enough left over to purchase new ballistic vests for the officers as well.