RICHLAND, Wa.,--The Ball Camera is pretty neat. Inside the rubber casing is a camera equipped with audio capability. That means police can see and also hear what suspects are saying, if anything. This $4,500 ball belongs to the Benton County Regional SWAT Team.
It looks like a black tennis ball, but look closely because it is watching you. Here's a demonstration. Richland police Captain Mike Cobb enters this cage and is no longer visible. According to Officer Wayne Dubois, not knowing where a suspect is, limits options.
"This is a tool that helps keeps us safe and also, hopefully is gonna help keep the suspect safe in the process and help us get him into custody without anyone getting hurt," says Dubois.
To find Captain Cobb, a Ball Camera is rolled in. Once it settles, it begins to rotate from side to side. Back in the garage, Officer Dubois uses his display unit to see exactly where Cobb is. The Ball Camera shows Dubois that Cobb is standing in the corner of the cage. By having eyes into his location, SWAT can make their next move.