Officers on the Delta Police Department’s new violence suppression team targeting the ongoing gang conflict are now wearing body-worn cameras for officer safety reasons. The move marks the first time that a front-line patrol police team in B.C. will be using body-worn cameras on a regular basis, according to the device’s manufacturer, Axom. (Delta Police Department photo)

Officers on the Delta Police Department’s new violence suppression team targeting the ongoing gang conflict are now wearing body-worn cameras for officer safety reasons. The move marks the first time that a front-line patrol police team in B.C. will be using body-worn cameras on a regular basis, according to the device’s manufacturer, Axom. (Delta Police Department photo)

Delta police anti-gang team first in B.C. to use body-worn cameras

DPD launched interdiction team May 15; have since seized drugs, cash and sword from alleged gangsters

Delta police targeting gangs and gang affiliates are now the first front-line officers in B.C. regularly using body-worn cameras.

On Friday afternoon (May 21), the Delta Police Department announced that members of its recently-launched gang interdiction team have begun to use Axon body-worn cameras as a tool to help increase officer safety.

“The team using the cameras has a mandate to intercept potential gang activity, and interact with those involved in the gang conflict,” DPD Chief Neil Dubord said in a press release. “We want to do everything we can to reduce the risk of violent behaviour by gang members.”

“We must keep our officers safe in order to keep the public safe.”

The department has been conducting a limited-use pilot project involving the body-worn cameras since January of this year, primarily using them during officer training. That pilot was scheduled to conclude at the end of this month.

On Wednesday (May 12), the Delta police board extended the pilot through to September 2021 and approved the additional use for the cameras due to the increased violence seen during the ongoing gang conflict.

“In Richmond we saw alleged gang members actually shoot at police officers following a homicide at the airport,” Delta Mayor and police board chair George Harvie said in a press release. “We wanted to make sure we were doing everything we could as a board to help safeguard both our police officers and the community. This conflict calls for swift action, so we decided to expand the pilot project.”

According to the device’s manufacturer, Axon, the board’s decision marks the first time that a front-line patrol police team in B.C. will be using body-worn cameras on a regular basis.

In the wake of a number of shootings across Metro Vancouver in recent weeks, including the fatal shooting of a corrections officer in North Delta on May 1, the Delta Police Department has taking a number of steps to try and prevent further violence in the community, using a three-pronged strategy focused on interdiction, investigation and prevention.

RELATED: Delta police taking action to address gang conflict (May 17, 2021)

On Saturday, May 15, Delta police launched its new team focused on intercepting any potential gang or related activity and acting as a deterrent through a high-profile presence in public spaces, such as along Scott Road and at popular restaurants.

The team also regularly checks on individuals who must abide by curfews and release conditions.

DPD officers have stepped up visits to locations where gang members are known to frequent and report making some “informative stops” over that first weekend.

In the week since, Delta police have come into contact with a number of known gang members and affiliates, and have seized a sword, drugs and cash related to drug trafficking. Those investigations are ongoing.

“Early feedback from the public and the restaurant staff and patrons indicate that this high-visibility approach is needed and welcomed,” Dubord said.

According to Friday’s press release, studies have shown body-worn cameras reduce the use of force by — and against — police by affecting the behaviour of individuals who are aware of the recording in progress.

In addition to helping reduce the risk of violence towards officers, police hope the cameras — which they note will be used in accordance with policy and provincial standards and with oversight from the department’s management team — will accomplish four key objectives: increasing public trust and confidence, increasing officer accountability and transparency, improving evidence documentation, and resolving complaints about alleged officer misconduct.

The eight cameras, which together cost the department about $8,600, were purchased under the DPD’s existing police equipment budget.

Friday’s press release notes that officers using the cameras follow restrictive guidelines on their use, therefore there is not expected to be significant amounts of video and the department will be able to manage digital storage requirements without additional funding.

Looking forward, the release also states that Police Records Information Management Environment (PRIME-BC), the records management system used by all police in B.C., recently announced it is developing infrastructure to manage digital evidence, and is currently working on a program to manage such evidence and the infrastructure required.

SEE ALSO: Hundreds gather to remember victim of North Delta shooting (May 8, 2021)

SEE ALSO: Police launch portal for submitting video, photos of North Delta shooting (May 4, 2021)



editor@northdeltareporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

DeltaPolice

Just Posted

Brian Korzenowski rides with Athena, left, and Venus who are safely strapped in and goggled up with the wind in their fur. (Zoe Ducklow - Sooke News Mirror)
Double-dog motorcycle sidecar brings smiles to Sooke Road commuters

Athena and Venus are all teeth and smiles from their Harley-Davidson sidecar

Camper the dog was found Wednesday night by someone walking their own dog along Hollywood Crescent. She had gone missing after a violent attack on June 11. (Courtesy of VicPD)
Camper the dog found safe after fleeing violent van attack in Victoria

Camper was found on Hollywood Crescent Wednesday night

North Saanich is in the process of revising its tree protection bylaw. The proposed changes have drawn much public interest and criticism, as council heard this week during their special meeting on the matter. (Courtesy District of North Saanich)
Revisions to tree protection bylaw in North Saanich face cutting criticism

Councillors to take up issue again in August after staff summarize massive public feedback

(Black Press Media file photo)
School parking problems plague Oak Bay residents

Need exceeds official requirements for parking at St. Michaels school

Rendering of the proposed design for the new public safety building in Esquimalt. (Courtesy Township of Esquimalt)
Esquimalt’s borrowing plan authorized for new public safety building

Alternate approval process didn’t garner enough opposition to warrant public vote

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

Kimberly Bussiere and other laid-off employees of Casino Nanaimo have launched a class-action lawsuit against the Great Canadian Gaming Corporation. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
B.C. casino workers laid off during pandemic launch class-action lawsuit

Notice of civil claim filed in Supreme Court of B.C. in Nanaimo against Great Canadian Gaming

A float plane crashed into the waters near Painters Lodge in Campbell River on Thursday morning. Photo by Alistair Taylor / Campbell River Mirror
Float plane crashes into water near Campbell River

Pilot uninjured, plane hit sandbar while landing

John Kromhoff with some of the many birthday cards he received from ‘pretty near every place in the world’ after the family of the Langley centenarian let it be known that he wasn’t expecting many cards for his 100th birthday. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
Cards from all over the world flood in for B.C. man’s 100th birthday

An online invitation by his family produced a flood of cards to mark his 100th birthday

FILE – Nurse Iciar Bercian prepares a shot at a vaccine clinic for the homeless in Calgary, Alta., Wednesday, June 2, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
B.C. scientists to study effectiveness of COVID vaccines in people with HIV

People living with HIV often require higher doses of other vaccines

A 50-year-old woman lost control of her vehicle Tuesday, June 15, crashing through a West Vancouver school fence that surrounds playing children. (West Vancouver Police)
Driver ticketed for speeding near B.C. school crashes into playground fence days later

‘It’s an absolute miracle that nobody was injured,’ says Const. Kevin Goodmurphy

Dr. Réka Gustafson, who is British Columbia’s deputy provincial health officer, speaks during a news conference in Vancouver on April 8, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. public health officials prepare to manage COVID-19 differently in the future

Flu-like? Health officials anticipate shift from pandemic to communicable disease control strategies

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

Most Read