Metro Nashville Police Department Says Small Percentage of Body-Worn Cameras Malfunctioning

The Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) said in a Tuesday release that a small percentage of its officers’ body-worn cameras are not working properly.

“The Nashville Police Department is urgently asking Motorola, the parent company of WatchGuard, the vendor of the police department’s body-worn and in-car camera system, to explain why a small percentage of videos are turning up incomplete when they transfer from the upload server to the storage server,” the release said.

The issue was originally noted on May 6, when a judge requested body-worn camera footage from a DUI stop.

MNPD says 183 arrest or citation situations – involving both patrol car cameras and body worn cameras – were affected by the issue. The tech problem stems not from recording the video, but from storing it on online servers.

According to the department, in the 183 malfunctions, video was uploaded to an upload server, but never transferred to a storage server so that it could be replayed if necessary.

“As a major city user of WatchGuard camera technology, the Nashville Police Department is asking Motorola to make identifying and fixing the technological issues a top priority,” MNPD said.

“A Motorola technical engineer is to arrive in Nashville [Wednesday]. In the meantime, Police Dpeartment [sic] staff has written computer scripts that will cause an alert when data from the upload server does not totally transfer to the storage server,” according to the release. “The department can then go directly to the original body-worn or in-car camera that recorded the video and retrieve it directly from the camera within 72 hours of the original recording.”

MNPD did not immediately return a comment request.

The malfunction comes less than a year after MNPD completed the installation of the body-worn and patrol car cameras, which occurred in October.

“After project completion at all eight precincts in mid-July, training and camera distribution continued to officers in all other remaining police department components,” MNPD said at the time.

“As of today, cameras have been deployed to 1,367 authorized employees (lieutenants, sergeants, and officers) to include Metro Parks Police. In-car camera systems with multiple angles have been installed in a total of 790 police vehicles.”

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Pete D’Abrosca is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Body Camera” by Tony Webster. CC BY-SA 2.0.




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