Updated: July 15, 2020 06:16 PM
Created: July 15, 2020 12:09 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The Bernalillo County Sheriff's Office held a press conference Wednesday morning to discuss their plan to meet the state's body camera requirement.
Last week Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed a bill requiring all law enforcement to wear body cameras.
"To us, this is an archaic piece of technology," BCSO Sheriff Manny Gonzales said as he held up a body camera.
Gonzales said the plan isn't to buy body cameras. He is looking to partner with a company in order for deputies to be able to put smartphones in their vests and record video.
It's unclear when this new BCSO system would be ready, but Gonzales said it won't be within the 90-day deadline allotted by the state. The sheriff also said they don't have a cost estimate.
Bernalillo County commissioners recently approved a million dollars for body cameras for BCSO.
"I'm telling you, a million dollars is not enough to outfit the Bernalillo County Sheriff's Office with enough cameras or phones or whatever technology we chose to outfit all our department," Gonzales said.
BCSO projects the cost to equip the department would exceed $8 million.
On the day the law was signed by Lujan Grisham, BCSO issued a statement saying the bill did not have enough input from law enforcement and relied on outdated technology.
"The law, the way it was drafted, was set up for every law enforcement agency in New Mexico to fail," Gonzales said. "At this point it's impossible to meet that. But in good faith we'll continue to work hard and we're taking this matter very serious and we're all on board. Nobody has worked harder, nobody has researched this topic more than us."
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