For Immediate Release
Posted: May 30, 2024


Public Information Office
(603) 271-5602 |

NH Department of Corrections Announces Department-Wide Rollout of Body-Worn Cameras

CONCORD, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Corrections announces the deployment of its department-wide body-worn camera initiative. Every sworn law enforcement officer in the department is now issued a body-worn camera, and all emergency vehicles are equipped with in-vehicle camera systems. The New Hampshire Department of Corrections is now only the second state corrections department in the country to deploy body-worn cameras department-wide to all sworn law enforcement officers.

The department began a pilot of body-worn cameras through a US Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Assistance federal grant awarded in 2019. The grant provided technical assistance to engage a variety of stakeholders, establish departmental policy and funding to purchase 52 body-worn cameras with a total grant amount of $52,006.00. The COVID-19 pandemic delayed the pilot’s implementation timeline.

After Governor Sununu’s Commission on Law Enforcement Accountability, Community and Transparency (LEACT) encouraged all law enforcement agencies to use body and/or dash cameras, the department advocated for additional state general funds through the budgeting process to deploy cameras to the whole of the department. Beyond the $52,006 US DOJ grant, the body-worn camera systems, including equipment and storage, is funded through state general funds at a cost of $720,000.

The department initiated the pilot deployment in July of 2023 in the Secure Psychiatric Unit and expanded rollout to the rest of the department including all corrections officers at the prisons and transitional housing units and all investigators and probation parole officers.

“With an unmatched commitment to safety and transparency, New Hampshire is the #1 state in the country for corrections for good reason,” said Governor Chris Sununu. “This announcement by the Department of Corrections is yet another step to ensure we continue setting the gold standard, provide transparency, and bolster public trust.”

“Every day, NHDOC officers come to work in a challenging environment and do extremely difficult work,” said Commissioner Helen Hanks. “The deployment of body-worn and in-vehicle cameras underscores the department’s commitment to safety and to ensure increased transparency. Deploying these cameras aims to improve overall staff and resident safety by proactively mitigating assaultive or disruptive behavior and creating a positive effect on interaction.”

The Department and the LEACT Commission recommendations strengthen transparency, accountability, and enforcement in public safety through implementation of these efforts. This is a significant step forward and builds upon NHDOC’s current utilization of fixed and handheld cameras at the facilities. Additionally, the body-worn cameras provide an audio component that is not available with the fix cameras.

To date, more than 450 body-worn cameras are deployed department-wide, and all officers and investigators are trained on their operation. All 55 of the department’s emergency vehicles are outfitted with cameras on the dash and/or inside the transport compartment.

By departmental policy, officers are to wear the body-worn cameras while on duty and must activate the cameras during reportable incidents or activities including but not limited to entering a housing unit or resident living space, responding to emergency situations, pat searches of residents, during the movement of any escorted resident in handcuffs or shackles and during any planned attempt to serve an arrest warrant or other planned arrest in the field. Additionally, some automatic triggers exist including unholstering a taser or firearm, or activating emergency lights in a vehicle, and more automatic triggers will be added as aged equipment is updated.

Following a competitive bid process in collaboration with the NH Department of Information Technology and the NH Department of Administrative Services, Axon Enterprise, Inc. was selected as the vendor for this project. Axon Body 3 cameras are the deployed body worn cameras while the Axon Fleet 3 is deployed as the in-vehicle camera systems.

Sgt. Rivard Wearing Axon Body 3 Camera
Sergeant Daniel Rivard Wearing an Axon Body 3 Camera
Axon Body 3 Camera
Axon Body 3 Camera