Town of Thorsby purchases police car camera

Published 10:22 pm Monday, June 7, 2010

The Thorsby Town Council voted Monday night to purchase an in-car video camera for the police department.

The camera’s estimated cost is $5,000, but there is room in the police department’s budget for the equipment with minor adjustments, said Mayor Dearl Hilyer.

“All we’re trying to do is keep our officers safe and be competitive with everybody else,” said Thorsby Police Chief Rodney Barnett.

Council member Tara Jewell said the cameras serve to assist with investigations and protect both citizens and police departments, especially from a legal standpoint. The cameras have the capability of storing up to two minutes of footage prior to activation.

On the downside, they are rather expensive, but Hilyer said Barnett did “a good job of saving money in other areas,” which freed up more funding for the purchase of equipment.

In other business, the council officially canvassed last Tuesday’s wet/dry vote. A majority of citizens voted to go wet, 310 “yes” versus 208 “no.”

The council also approved the purchase of a $2,500 dump truck, which was previously used by the military. The town recently declared an old truck surplus and was able to come up with the money.

Water Superintendent Terry Jackson said the portion of Iowa Avenue between Lincoln Street and Pitts Street would be closed next week for the replacement of a pipe in the area. He said the project was scheduled to start Monday, but that is subject to change.