Sheriff Joe Arpaio announces implementation of body cameras

A body camera will now be a required part of a Maricopa County Sheriff’s deputy’s uniform, Sheriff Joe Arpaio announced Thursday.

The sheriff’s office purchased 700 body cameras from Scottsdale-based TASER for the price of one — all 700 cameras cost the department just $1,113.55.

Arpaio assured the media at the press conference that the cameras, which he was initially reluctant to embrace, wouldn’t change how sheriff’s deputies do their job on a day-to-day basis.

“I will never either ethically, professionally or from my heart ever ever tell my deputy sheriffs not to keep doing their job,” he said.

The cameras will be worn on the shoulder and then moved to above the ear when a deputy has an interaction with the public, so that the camera sees almost exactly what the deputy sees.

Arpaio said that of the 700 cameras, 550 are already in use by his deputies.