Vallejo Police Department Introduces Body Audio Camera Analysis Tool to Examine Police-Community Interactions – Times-Herald

The Vallejo Police Department announced on Friday a partnership with Truleo to bring body camera audio analysis to the city of Vallejo.

The new audio intelligence platform transcribes audio from body-worn cameras so police management can analyze officers’ interactions with the public. Officials say the technology can also detect de-escalation and serve as an early warning tool to identify areas for improvement. Police in Vallejo will start using the Truleo software this month.

According to a VPD press release, in most cases, body-worn camera footage is only reviewed during critical incidents, sometimes taking hours to analyze. With Truleo, video from body-worn cameras can be analyzed in real time, reducing examination time by up to 90%. Technology also provides law enforcement leaders with data-driven insights and trends to mitigate risk, reduce liability, improve service delivery, demonstrate great performance, and inform training decisions.

Police Chief Shawny Williams. (Courtesy photo)

“Adding Truleo to our toolkit allows us to build the trust and legitimacy of the community we serve,” said Vallejo Police Chief Shawny K. Williams. “These fundamental principles, along with accountability, transparency, integrity and professionalism are the pinnacle of relationship policing. We are delighted to partner with Truleo as we build on this long-term commitment.

The Truleo model also offers an event classification to categorize the types of service calls and the content of conversations. Truleo then plans to measure metrics such as the percentage of respectful and courteous interactions an agent has on a monthly basis and what language is effective when interacting with a community member.

Melissa Nold, an attorney for the Nold Law and longtime body-worn police advocate, said the technology is a step in the right direction.

“It’s not too little, too late because while it doesn’t help in past situations, it can still potentially save lives in the future,” Nold said. “We’re always looking for the best technology, but sometimes it’s the lack of use of the technology, the lack of application not to use it. Officers who do not use body cameras have no problem and there is no strict discipline against them… that has never been the policy, it is always the people.

Nold brought up the Angel Ramos case, saying that if the body cameras had been on there wouldn’t have been a test “he said, she said.” Vallejo police officer Zachary Jacobsen shot dead Ramos, 21, in a family brawl in January 2017.

“Turning on body-worn cameras is the way to regain the trust of the police in Vallejo,” Nold said. “It should be like muscle memory for them to activate. If a video is shown, it can prove a lot. It should be more difficult for an officer to defend himself if this is not the case.

To learn more about Truleo’s Natural Language Processing (NLP) model and CJIS Compliant Data Transfer Process, click here:

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