THE BRONX - After years of reluctance, the New York City Police Department has started videotaping suspects as detectives question them as part of a pilot program.

The program started Wednesday in the 48th Precinct, which covers East Tremont and Fordham in The Bronx. It will focus only on felony assault suspects and will provide police the chance to assess the program's strengths and weaknesses, the NYPD said.

Officials say police are not required to tell suspects they are being taped unless they ask. However, they are required to turn the camera off if a suspect asks them to.

If successful, the pilot program could be expanded.