DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — Ohio Governor Mike DeWine recently announced five million dollars in grants will be available for law enforcement agencies across the state to get body cameras.
The Auglaize County Sheriff’s Office received over $67,000 from the first round of the state’s Body-Worn Camera Grant Program. Now, all full-time deputies are equipped.
One of the first things Auglaize County Sheriff Michael Voorhes wanted to do when he was sworn in was to buy body worn cameras, and now he is speaking about the benefits of having them.
County deputies were used to dash cam video, so being on camera was not the problem, but having to wear a camera was something they had to get used to.
“That adjustment period comes in, you know, when to turn them on, follow the policy, when to use them,” Sheriff Voorhes said. “We have docking stations in the cars if the batteries are low. So, the guys were just getting the adjustment. Hey, I got to remember my body cam, things like that.”
The Sheriff’s Office will continue to apply for more program funding. Vorhees said he wants to use those funds to obtain cameras for his part-time crew. He believes it will benefit his office and the community.
“When you’re going to send some of the prosecutor’s office to review for charges, it’s right there in front of it,” he said. “They can see exactly everything that we’re seeing, everything that the deputy had to deal with on that call, who was involved.”
Vorhees said the transparency is great, and being able to look back on how situations were handled helps deputies improve.
“Having that evidence, that video to show really helps our cases and it helps the deputies understand better reports and understand what they can see and go back and review.”
Vorhees says said is grateful for the funding from the state and believes Governor DeWine has the best interest of law enforcement in mind.