June 01, 2015
“We are pleased to provide the Solano Community College Police Department with the latest in Police Body Camera Technology. We at WOLFCOM specifically designed our WOLFCOM VISION Police Body Camera to be reliable and police officer friendly with the specific features that this department appreciates. We designed that vibrating on/off feature because we know officers need to know immediately when their cameras are working and rolling. We design our cameras to be the best, because cops deserve the best,” said WOLFCOM founder Peter Austin Onruang.
Chief Eric Thelen and Stanley Davis II purchased 12 total through their firearms & training business, Delta Precision Firearms & Training; six were donated to the department for his deputies and sheriff security officers and the other six slated to be issued to the Solano County Humane Society officers. Chief Thelen and his deputies/officers wear the WOLFCOM VISION cameras while patrolling the Solano Community College Campus and two centers.
“I felt that we needed police body cameras especially on a college setting with the dense population of students and visitors to the campus while providing uniformed personnel with another quality tool to protect themselves and the public they protect, especially in a worst case scenario. I have been working on a body camera policy for a number of years. We first purchased a few Vivue Body Worn Cameras because that was the popular camera at the time with all of the local city agencies. We found that the Vivue was easy to accidently activate by normal activities as a patrol deputy. Most of the video we took with the Vivue was shot accidentally. The deputies were first apprehensive about being the first to wear a body worn camera but specifically disliked the number of accidental activations of the Vivue. They found themselves routinely having to look down at their chest to see if the Vievu was recording without them intentionally turning it on,” said Thelen.
“I looked into getting a replacement for the Vivue. I was familiar with WOLFCOM because we had previously tested the WOLFCOM 3RD EYE camera but ultimately didn’t like the placement of that unit on our uniforms. So I looked at the Vision and liked the pre-record capability and the ability to angle the lens all made sense,” said Thelen.
My deputies like all the features; the vibration that lets you know it’s turned on and rolling, they don’t have to worry about their camera accidentally turning on like with ViVue. They like the pre-record, and the video quality audio are also excellent. The deputies and officers assigned to the college were excited to get the WOLFCOM and have embraced the fact that they have become part of their uniform. (Shortly after I issued the Vision cameras, my agency [Solano County Sheriff’s Office] published a policy which strictly regulates the use of any BWC (issued by the dept. or personally owned) and what procedure must be followed to store ALL captured video onto the dept. video evidence server),” said Thelen.
We had an incident in April, where a person was driving recklessly around and onto our campus. The driver almost hit one deputy who was arriving to work, and a student who was leaving the campus, as he drove into their path. He pulled into one of the campus parking lots, parked, and began walking toward the campus buildings. The off-duty deputy contacted the driver and saw that he appeared to beintoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance, and was taken quickly taken into custody. While in handcuffs in the back seat of the police car, he rolled onto his back and kicked out one of the door windows. The driver then proceeded to violently push his way out through the opening, yelling ‘I’m dying, I’m dying’,” said Thelen.
“We had cameras recording from different angles and we were able to capture everything. Once the driver was completely out of the patrol car and on the ground, it required four deputies to keep him there. During the struggle, one of college deputies was kicked in the chest and later had to go to the hospital. Without the video, it would have been the deputy’s word vs the suspects. The video not only captured the incident, but all the care that was taken to try and talk the suspect down and keep the suspect from hurting himself or any bystanders….The suspect’s behavior was bizarre. In the short time we had interaction with him, he went from confused but compliant, to panic and flight, to laughter. Visually we have everything on tape, so this should be an open and shut case. The deputy who was kicked in the chest was wearing his WOLFCOM VISION at the time and the blow to his chest broke the clip that held the camera to his uniform. You can’t get better video evidence then a foot kicking the camera and try to deny that was battery. The cameras were all set on pre-record and HD mode, so all of the cameras captured the entire incident and the video quality is excellent,” said Thelen.
“When you compare $900 each for the Vivue cameras vs. the $280 each for the WOLFCOM Vision cameras, economically it just makes sense. WOLFCOM is so much more versatile. In my opinion, everything about it is better than other cameras I’ve seen,” said Thelen.