NYPD Pulls Nearly 3,000 Body Cameras After One Starts Smoking, Explodes

An officer was wearing one of the cameras Saturday night when he noticed it was smoking and took it off, the NYPD said

What to Know

  • The NYPD has suspended the use of a certain kind of body camera “effective immediately” after one of them exploded
  • A police officer was wearing a Vievu model LE-5 body-worn camera when he noticed that it was smoking and took it off, the NYPD said
  • The officer wasn't injured, but the department has asked any officers that have been using LE-5 cameras to bring them back to their commands

The NYPD has suspended the use of a certain kind of body camera “effective immediately” after one of them exploded.

A police officer was wearing a Vievu model LE-5 body-worn camera on a “midnight tour” on Saturday night when he noticed that it was smoking and took it off, the NYPD said.

Not long after, the camera exploded, according to the NYPD. No one was injured by the explosion, the department said.

“The incident revealed a potential for the battery inside the camera to ignite,” the NYPD said in a statement. “The cause and scope of the defect are currently being investigated.”

Axon, the parent company of Vievu, said it was working closely with the NYPD to investigate. 

"Officer safety is of the utmost importance to Axon," the company said in a statement. "We will do whatever is necessary to quickly and safely resolve this situation.”

Of the 15,500 body-worn cameras deployed around the city, 2,990 are LE-5 cameras, the NYPD said.

The department has asked any officers who have been using LE-5 cameras to bring them back to their commands.

Those officers will not be wearing body cameras in the interim, the NYPD said.

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