Jasper County Sheriff's Deputies will start wearing body cameras sometime in the new year after two years of testing and evaluation of different brands of cameras.

Jasper County Sheriff's Deputies will start wearing body cameras sometime in the new year after two years of testing and evaluation of different brands of cameras.
Jasper County Commissioners approved a contract on Tuesday for computers and equipment with Turn-Key Mobile Inc., a technology company based in Jefferson City.
Sheriff Randee Kaiser said the vote Tuesday was to renew a contract with the company that provides mobile technology for the department's cars, but this renewal also includes body cameras.
“We've worked with this company for years,” Kaiser said. “Every few years we put the contract out for bid to see if there are other providers interested in the providing the equipment. No one else bid so we're renewing with this company.”
Kaiser said the company provides all the equipment needed to turn a new car into a patrol vehicle, including radios, computers, the front bumper, dash cameras, radars and other equipment.
Body cameras are new in this contract, Kaiser said.
“We've been in testing and evaluation with body cameras since sometime in 2016,” Kaiser said. “But it seems like we test a camera for five or six months, then the camera we're testing becomes outdated. We'd think we're settled on a brand and then someone tells us about something new. The technology is advancing so fast.”
Kaiser said Sheriff's office will likely spend around $60,000 to purchase 30 body cameras plus software and accessories to outfit deputies over the next year.
“It's a big chunk of money,” Kaiser said. “And that's why I say we want to be able to have these items for hopefully for 10 years so we get a good return on our money.”
Kaiser said body cameras are part of policing these days and he's looking forward to getting the cameras in service.
“I think there's that sense of accountability that goes with having a body camera on,” Kaiser said. “We're certainly not opposed to that because we want to be totally transparent in our interactions with the public.”