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La. sheriff equips TASERs with cameras

By Michelle Hunter, East Jefferson bureau 
The Times-Picayune 
Jefferson Parish Sheriff Harry Lee reached into his department's deep pockets to equip all of the Sheriff's Office's 681 stun guns with tiny video cameras designed to roll tape whenever the guns are deployed.

Lee spent $400 each on the cameras -- $272,400 total -- to upgrade the Taser X26 stun guns used by deputies since April 2004.

While the cameras aren't likely to quell all of the controversy in recent years surrounding the use of Tasers, they'll definitely come in handy if and when the department must defend itself against excessive force lawsuits, the sheriff said. Also, the cameras will also serve as a deterrent against deputy abuse, Lee said.

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