Body Cameras Proving Useful for Martinsville Police

Martinsville, VA -- The Martinsville Police Department says a small device has been making a big difference in fighting crime.

About a year ago, they got 38 cameras that the officers wear. They received the cameras because of a grant from the Virginia Municipal League. And they say they have really proven themselves.

Even on a very routine call, every word spoken and every movement taken will be captured clearly.

"Having this thing with us is like having someone with us whose memory is infallible," said Sgt. Chad Rhoads with the Martinsville Police Department.

Captain Eddie Cassady calls the cameras "like another officer" watching out for his force.

"They have been very useful for us," said Cassady.

For about a year, every Martinsville Police patrolling officer has worn one of these cameras. And for such a small device, it does a lot even capturing the sound of cars driving by in the distance.

"It helps clear up any disagreements. Anytime you talk to somebody, there are two different versions of what went on," said Rhodes.

And Rhoads explains, this camera shows the real version.

"It helps us investigate cases. It also helps us identify potential witnesses in other crime scenes too," said Cassady.

In the past few months, it did something they didn't even expect. When a man accused officers of assaulting his wife, Cassady says the cameras proved the accusations false.

"Once we viewed it we were able to consult with the Commonwealth's Attorney and place charges for filing a false report," said Cassady.

Captain Cassady says they have used the video as evidence in many cases throughout the year. So, they say it has really done it's job.