GSUPD to get body cameras

With all of the violence and verbal abuse going on around the nation, the Grambling State University Police Department chose to make upgrade to ensure the safety of students.

Some of these updates were a new communication system, an updated radio room, and body cameras that will be worn by every officer.

GSU Interim Police Chief Howard Caviness was approved for a grant of $100,000 to make this update possible — meaning none of the money will come from the university or its students’ pockets.

“It’s about time that we catch up, even just to the 2000s with these updates, especially the body cameras.  Unfortunately, it is common that we get complaints of verbal abuse from the students (against the police officers),” said Caviness, who has been in law enforcement for the past 26 years including a stint with the FBI and the Drug Enforcement Agency for seven years. “It makes it difficult to get to the truth by going off of just he said versus she said. Now we will have proof.”

The body cameras are about the size of a pinky, an inch and a half long. They will also be wireless and worn on the shirts on the upper torso. An added feature is still mode, which allows officers to take pictures at crime scenes.

“The students here at Grambling are our customers, therefore we want to make sure that they feel safe,” said Caviness, who was hired by Grambling’s interim president Dr. Cynthia Warrick in July 2014.

The officers will also be getting new uniforms, and renovations are under construction for a remolded police station. Caviness said he will continue to look for more grants to help keep the station up-to-date and under control.