WYOMING, Mich. (WOOD) - The City of Wyoming is fighting to get back tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars from a company who it says sold it a faulty product.
Police say their in-car dash camera system failed them so often they decided to scrap the system they bought from Kustom Signals and buy a new one. Now, Wyoming wants its money back on the original purchase.
The dash cams were upgraded again in 2010 in an effort to make them work. About a year later, they were out of service because police say they still weren't working. City officials said the dash cams never really worked correctly.
Last year, Wyoming Police Chief James Carmody made the decision to pull the cameras out of service.
He said he had no choice but to pull the cameras when they were found to be unreliable.
Kustom Signals installed the equipment poorly, he said, and then recommended fixes that didn't fix the problems. In one instance, police say, they installed indoor equipment outside.
"It came to a point that we decided that we're going to take them offline because we didn't want our officers being questioned in terms of 'Yeah, the camera worked yesterday, but it didn't work today when it really needed to work,'" Carmody told 24 Hour News 8. "We went, showed due dilligence and worked with the company. Everything we did was based on their recommendations."
Carmody said part of the issue is the mandated bidding process the city has to go through on projects like this. They're required to take the lowest bid, but this may be a case of getting what you pay for.
The original camera system cost around $170,000. The money came from a federal grant.
The new system is pulling nearly $200,000 directly from the city budget. The chief and city attorneys said they're working to rectify that.
Police say the new system is working well.
Kustom Signals declined a request for comment from 24 Hour News 8.
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