Salem PD Officers Now Equipped with Weapon-Mounted Cameras

Jul 3, 2019

A south-central Illinois police department is providing its officers with a new tool to help document officer-involved shootings and other critical situations.

Salem Police now have weapon-mounted cameras at their disposal from Minnesota-based Viridian Weapon Technologies.

Viridian CEO Brian Hedeen says the small device is a camera with a light that fits onto an officer's duty weapon.
 
"It's a high definition camera as well; it does have a built-in microphone so it captures video and audio of whatever the officer is engaged with there."

He says this device is better than a body camera or dash cam because it sees what the officer sees.
 
"It turns on automatically as soon as it comes out of the holster. It's always pointed in the right direction. It never has an obstructed view. I guess that's why it's going to be more reliable."

Hedeen says at $700 apiece, these devices are less expensive than body or dash cameras.

He says the idea for this technology dates back to the confusing circumstances surrounding the 2014 officer-involved shooting in Ferguson, Missouri that prompted weeks of protests.