WASHINGTON—Body cameras worn by police continue to attract attention in by government officials and are being extensively covered in the general media. In a recent article from Reuters, reporter Julia Edwards describes some pushback from officials and civil rights organizations regarding the deployment and use of cameras worn by police.
In particular, some groups are concerned that police officers will turn on and off the cameras to support the officers' activities, but miss important actions that may reflect poorly on police. According to the article, federal agencies that might become involved in setting standards for body-worn police cameras are deferring action to state and local regulators. Some public advocates fear that this might tilt the rules regarding operation of the cameras in favor of the police.
For more information about the possibilities and demands of body cameras, take a look at this article:
Among the situations discussed in the article is an incident that occurred in Daytona Beach, Fla., where police have been using body cameras since 2010. Datona Beach Police Chief Michael Chitwood details an event where a police officer was fired after not following the department's rules on body cameras. The incident included the beating of a citizen by the police officer.
Body cameras are an important new technology that holds promise to improve policing and public safety. Some time time to create reasonable regulations for their use sounds like a good thing.