East Los Angeles twins win $10K to develop new police body cams

EAST LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Inspired by the recent violence involving law enforcement, twins Penelope and America Lopez want to revolutionize body cameras used by police.

The 24-year-old sisters from Lincoln Heights debuted a wearable, trackable police body camera that can also stream video at the AT&T Women in Tech Challenge earlier this year

The innovation won them the $10,000 dollar top prize and the respect of those who didn't initially see them as contenders.

"Now, they take us more seriously," Penelope Lopez said.

The pair, who grew up in a Boyle Heights housing project, was also honored by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors for their achievements.

"Who says that women can't break and shatter that glass ceiling and get into professional technical fields," Supervisor Hilda Soliz said.

Next up for the Lopez twins: Coder Summit at Stanford University.

After that, it's back to tweaking electronics and banging out software at Cal State Los Angeles' 24-hour computer lab.

That is where they'll continue to hone their body camera prototype into something they hope will help boost police transparency.

"We didn't want to create the next dating app. We wanted to create a prototype that would help bridge that trust between law enforcement and the public," America Lopez said.

It's also a bridge connecting two women from Lincoln Heights to a tech industry that now seems a whole lot closer to East Los Angeles.
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