KENOSHA — The Kenosha Police Department's body cameras have finally arrived after the city purchased the devices in the wake of the shooting of Jacob Blake by Kenosha Police Officer Rusten Sheskey last summer.
The police department came under criticism after the shooting because its officers were not equipped with body cameras. The police department had no video or audio recordings of the Jacob Blake shooting other than what citizens recorded themselves.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 45 percent of police departments use body cameras. TMJ4's I-Team found more than a dozen local agencies don't use them including:
- Kenosha County Sheriff
- Waterford Police
- Wauwatosa Police (The Wauwatosa Police Department says they have purchased body cameras but they are still training and implementing them for officers.)
- Fox Point Police
- Oak Creek Police
- Glendale Police
- Franklin Police
- Cudahy Police
- New Berlin Police
- Waukesha Police
- Waukesha County Sheriff
- Summit Police
- Elm Grove Police
- Hartland Police
- Menomonee Falls Police
- Mukwonago Police
- North Prairie Police
The city of Kenosha passed a budget to buy body cameras for the police department.
When body cameras aren't available, most agencies can rely on squad car cameras for audio and video. But in the Jacob Blake shooting, that didn't happen either.
According to Kenosha County District Attorney Michael Graveley, responding officers in Kenosha did not activate any squad car recordings, and did not record audio from a microphone they can wear on their uniforms.
In his report, Graveley said, "Had those microphones been recording we might have a complete record of what was said during this encounter including commands issued by the involved officers."
The Kenosha Police Department posted to Twitter on Wednesday, "They’re here! Body cams being inventoried. More to come in the next few weeks. Stay tuned."
They’re here! Body cams being inventoried. More to come in the next few weeks. Stay tuned. pic.twitter.com/1JJ4ETFqjz— Kenosha Police Dept. (@KenoshaPolice) September 22, 2021