Body Cameras

Body CamOver the past 3 years, the West St. Paul Police Department has been researching body cameras. This includes technology, policy development, and implementation. Body cameras are excellent tools for law enforcement to use for the documentation of events, statements, and other types of evidence.

We are currently testing four systems and are hopeful to have full implementation in the fall. In the meantime, we would like your input on the body camera program as well as the draft departmental policy before implementing a final version of the Portable Audio/Video Recorder Policy. 

Please take a few minutes to review the Audio/Video Recorder Draft Policy here and let us know what you think here. We welcome any questions, concerns, and comments!

West St. Paul Police Department's Records Maintenance and Release Policy can be viewed here.

Minnesota State Statutes provide guidance in policy development, which include:

  • Data classification, access procedures, and retention policies
  • Procedures for testing, documenting malfunctions and addressing those malfunctions
  • Circumstances where recording is mandatory, prohibited, or discretionary
  • Circumstances under which officers must tell people they are being recorded
  • Guidelines for ending a recording
  • Procedures for secure storage of data and backup procedures
  • Procedures to ensure compliance with the policy and to address violations

Various other state statutes dictate data retention policies along with what video is considered private, confidential or public. Below are relevant Minnesota State Statutes regarding Body Cameras:
Minnesota Statute 626.8473 PORTABLE RECORDING SYSTEMS ADOPTION
Minnesota Statute 13.825 PORTABLE RECORDING SYSTEMS
Minnesota Statute Chapter 13 GOVERNMENT DATA PRACTICES

Prior to purchasing or implementing a body camera system, Minnesota laws require us to accept public comments via mail or e-mail. We must also allow for a public comment period during a regular city council meeting. Lastly, we must allow for public comments and input when developing our body worn camera policies.

Please send your comments on the program and policy: