ORLANDO, Fla. – The University of Central Florida Police Department now has the ability to livestream a police officer’s body camera video directly into their headquarters.
The technology isn’t new — but using it on a college campus is.
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Sgt. Greg Larkin demonstrated the capability for News 6 from an upstairs conference room at UCF police headquarters. We watched live as his officer down the road handed out a ticket.
“Supervisors can use it for review or gathering intelligence in real time,” Larkin said. “So you might pull up a live stream just to make sure an officer is doing what he or she is supposed to be doing or to make sure an officer is OK.”
Larkin, in charge of body-worn technology for the department, is responsible for keeping the body cameras up to date. Rapidly improving camera quality and deteriorating battery life now require the cameras to be upgraded every 2.5 years.
The latest body camera version the department just received also pinpoint an officer’s exact location. And the cameras send an instant alert when an officer draws his taser or gun, warning supervisors immediately of a potentially critical situation so they can look in immediately and send help, if need be.
Larkin said that’s especially important on a college campus where so many students are concentrated in so many small spaces.
“Some years ago there was a call that was someone in the library reporting with a firearm,” Larkins said. “It turned out not to have been but that information was coming in so quickly and officers rushed to the scene, they started doing a systematic search and they found someone who looked to be that person and they had no firearm.”
The day was April 26, 2016. Police with long guns swarmed the campus and locked down the library while nervous students watched and waited.
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