POLICE in South Staffordshire have been equipped with body cams to help in the fight against crime.
Frontline officers, PCSO's and special constables will all have use of the cameras which has been funded by Police and Crime Commissioner Matthew Ellis who said:
"Body cams will revolutionise evidence gathering and help ensure complaints are dealt with more efficiently and cost effectively.
"They are part of rigorous efforts to ensure everything that's done is open, honest and transparent so that public confidence across policing and criminal justice is improved.
"The advantage of having these cameras is that they start to remove any doubts as to what happened, because it's caught on film.
"They will help officers get the best possible evidence and they will protect people who are being arrested and will save a vast amount of time by providing actual pictorial evidence in court rather than thousands and thousands of words."
Staffordshire police are the first force in the UK to have body-worn video cameras for all frontline officers.
Local police team leader Inspector Geoff Knight, whose area includes Kinver, Stourton, Enville and Bobbington, described the introduction of body cams as a major step forward.
It involves a high-definition camera being fitted into an officer's body armour. It can be operated by a touch of a button to record video and audio at crime scenes, including low-light situations, which can then be played directly in court as evidence.
Inspector Knight said: "The quality is superb. It's something we've been rolling out steadily which is now available to all trained staff."
The body cams will provide vital visual evidence in key investigations, while improving transparency when dealing with the public.
In addition, it's expected the cameras will also lead to efficiencies and savings at court through the use of video evidence, cutting paperwork and helping to get officers back on the streets.