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New York prison guard suffers burns after body camera turns on

Authorities say a New York City Department of Corrections captain suffered burns and smoke inhalation when his body camera suddenly caught fire.

NEW YORK — A New York City Department of Corrections captain suffered burns and smoke inhalation when his body camera suddenly caught fire, prompting the department to stop using the equipment pending an investigation.

The captain was on duty at the Rikers Island prison complex last Friday when his body-worn camera ignited without warning, Corrections Department spokesperson Annais Morales said.

The captain, whose name was not released, was treated at a hospital for burns and smoke inhalation, Morales said.

“The safety of our staff is paramount, which is why I am removing all body-worn cameras from service out of an abundance of caution while we investigate how and why this incident occurred,” said Corrections Commissioner Lynelle Maginley-Liddie in a statement.

More than 3,400 Reveal Media body cameras, assigned to all uniformed personnel, have been removed by the department, although more than 12,400 security cameras still operate at its facilities.

Spokespeople for Reveal Media did not respond to requests for comment.

Officials said it was the first time a body camera had caught fire since the department began using them in 2015.

The investigation is expected to last one to two weeks.