New Carlisle must upgrade its internet to a higher speed because its current connection isn’t fast enough to download and remotely transfer footage from new deputy body cameras to the Clark County Sheriff’s Office.
City Administrator Randy Bridge said the city must upgrade from paying about $80 per month to about $250 per month with Time Warner Cable to increase its bandwidth to allow deputies to download and transfer videos from the cameras.
“It would take days upon days to transfer the amount of gigabytes … The only other option we have is to up our internet speed,” Bridge said.
City Council members voted unanimously this week to increase the internet speed for a 30 day trial.
Bridge said if increasing the city’s internet speed to the highest connection Time Warner offers in the city doesn’t solve the problem, deputies will have to physically go to the sheriff’s substation in New Carlisle to download and transfer the footage from the camera to the sheriff’s office.
But Bridge and others said they don’t like the idea of having one of their deputies stop patrolling city streets to download and transfer the footage.
New Carlisle deputies have been using body cameras for about a month, Clark County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Doyle Wright said.
Wright said officials weren’t aware the city would have to upgrade the internet to remotely transfer data to the sheriff’s server in Springfield.
“We thought the speed would be available. It’s nothing really that New Carlisle has done wrong. My understanding is Time Warner is not offering the actual fiber speed that we’ll need in that area,” Wright said.
The county paid more than $80,000 to buy 60 body cameras plus the electronic equipment to store the footage. The cameras cost $450 a piece, Sheriff Gene Kelly has said previously.
The cameras are used when deputies have encounters with the public.
“The system itself is beneficial to the deputies and the public because it puts everybody in self check. It’s one of those things that you can’t dispute what’s recorded,” Wright said.
New Carlisle was provided a docking station that deputies can connect to the body camera, download footage and then transfer the data to a server in Springfield, Wright said.
The downloading and transfer of information is done quickly on the docking station, which also charges the cameras.
“What we’re trying to do is just to get it from New Carlisle to the server so everybody can have access that needs to,” Wright said.
New Carlisle Councilman Lowell McGlothin said the increased cost for faster internet is worth the cost.
“I’m all for (the body cameras). I think it’s a great idea to deal with the public,” McGlothin said.
Councilman Ethan Reynolds said he supported increasing the city’s internet.
Reynolds said he supports criminal justice reform and the use of body cameras as he said cops have been targeted in communities around the country.
“This body camera stuff has been talked about extensively. It’s something that we need,” Reynolds said.