HAYS COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — The Kyle Police Department is experiencing a frustrating problem: dash cam video storage that is malfunctioning.
The glitch has been going on for at least a year and the department said it has caused some court cases to stall. Everything on a routine traffic stop is recorded. That’s the department’s policy. But, when the officer takes the newly-recorded video back to the station, a glitch occurs, causing the department’s IT team to scramble.
“The video they’ve been working on splits,” said Lt. Andre Marmolojo. “And the data that’s associated with all parts of the split and we have to go find all of these parts of the video that aren’t searchable.”
For the last year, that malfunction in the 3-year-old digital recording system has frustrated some prosecutor, Lt. Marmolojo said.
The department’s solution: get a new system. Kyle officers are urging city council members to green-light a proposal to buy new equipment. It’s called AXON. And it will cost Kyle $120,000 to purchase and install in the first year and $80,000 to maintain every year after that. The money is already in the city’s 2018 budget.
The department says another perk of the new AXON system is cloud-based storage. Right now, officers upload all of their dash cam video to servers inside the department, which take up more space and time to store.
Officers say it’s a small price to shell out to make sure court cases aren’t stalled. “Its difficult for them to prosecute a case and take it to trial,” said Lt. Marmolojo.
In addition to buying a new digital recording system, another part of the department’s proposal would open the door to outfit the entire police department with body cameras. Right now, only two motorcycle officers have body cameras.
“I think it would help hold everyone more accountable if it’s recorded,” said Kyle Resident Joanie Earle. Kyle is one of the last departments to get the AXON system. Buda, San Marcos and Texas State University police already have it.
“As much as we’ve read about that over the years, body cameras protect everybody,” said Sandra Tenorio, who frequently shops in Kyle.
“People want to see that point of view from the officer,” Marmolojo said. If the city council approves the purchase of AXON, the department could have the complete system by December.