Fall River Police rolled out the department’s use of body cameras for the first time today.

According to a Fall River Police Facebook post, “the first group of officers assigned to the Special Operations Division hit the street wearing body worn cameras for the first time.”

“These officers are currently handling calls for service and interacting with the public while wearing this new equipment,” police wrote.

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Fall River Mayor Paul Coogan was present at roll call to see the equipment firsthand, police said.

“Today was an exciting day for our officers and our whole community,” Coogan said in a statement to WBSM. “Body cameras have been discussed and planned for quite some time, and we are glad to have a pilot program up and running. It’s an important first step towards having body cameras worn on every Fall River police officer.”

Mayor Paul Coogan and a police officer looking at a police body cam in Fall River, Massachusetts
City of Fall River Police Department via Facebook

The body camera program had its beginnings in March of 2021 when the department announced it was launching the pilot program using a Community Development Block Grant of $15,682 to outfit seven officers with the cameras. A council was also created to determine how to effectively use the cameras in policing in the city.

The city then received just over $201,000 from the Baker Administration in December to go toward the program.

In April of 2022, the cameras arrived at police headquarters and officers and command staff began training in how to use them.

Now, they’re finally being put to use.

“We are excited to start the process for our body worn camera program. This is the first step in providing additional transparency and openness to the community we serve,” Police Chief Paul F. Gauvin said in a statement to WBSM. “As we learn from this pilot program we will be working on agency-wide implementation. I was happy to see and hear the enthusiasm from the officers at roll call this morning as they prepared to hit the street with this new piece of equipment.”

Police officers in Fall River, Massachusetts equipped with a body cam
City of Fall River Police Department via Facebook

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