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Phoenix police increasing bodycams amid community anger

July 18, 2019 GMT

PHOENIX (AP) — The Phoenix Police Department is speeding up the rollout of more body cameras amid community anger sparked by video of officers cursing and pointing guns at a black family suspected of shoplifting.

The department is assigning body cameras Thursday to the sergeants and officers of its gang unit and downtown operation. Sgt. Tommy Thompson says this will bring to 1,100 the number of cameras in use by the department.

No charges were filed against the couple in the video. The woman was pregnant and holding their 1-year-old daughter. They say their 4-year-old daughter took a doll from a store.

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In February, city leaders approved $5 million to buy and maintain 2,000 devices for a force approaching 3,000 officers.

The department has had several hundred cameras for years.