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Cameras on LEO's

Discussion in 'Cop Talk' started by travDMH, Feb 21, 2012.

  1. I saw this video this morning and was wondering how some of the professionals in the business feel about technology like this?

    http://www.cnn.com/video/?/video/crime/2012/02/20/pkg-mn-police-standoff.wcco

    I guess it could be used in a "your word against his/hers" situation.

    A supervisor of mine at a fed law enforcement agency once told me "always behave on the job like you are being recorded"...guess that needs to be taken literally now.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2012
  2. JBaird22

    JBaird22

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    Washington
    I think these things are an officer safety issue just because of the fact you have a piece of hard electronic equipment on your face. As far as their usefulness, I guess it would help with report writing as you could just write: On this date and time I responded here. See attached video recording for further.

    Whatever happened to believing cops? Seriously. The chief's comment at the end didn't really surprise me but it doesn't help restore my faith either.
     


  3. DaBigBR

    DaBigBR No Infidels!

    8,798
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    Oct 28, 2005
    Circling the wagons.
    I accept that the day will come in my career where a body worn camera will be the rule and not the exception. The current generation of devices are aided by cheap camera technologoy and cheap storage, but hindered by crappy batteries and a balancing act between quality and file size.

    Of the current crop of wearable cameras, I think the Taser AXON (as seen in the video) is absolutely the most forward thinking, well designed device of the bunch. It most closely captures what the officer sees (since it moves with his head), includes an interface to the radio (radio traffic is recorded independently by the device and it has an earpiece built in), and has a fairly advanced control system (the handheld piece you see the officer holding). The method of data handling is also a very interesting choice: the device is docked in the office and the video is uploaded to two geographically disparate locations. All management by the agency is conducted via web interface.
     
  4. DaBigBR

    DaBigBR No Infidels!

    8,798
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    Oct 28, 2005
    Circling the wagons.
    That is something that Taser addressed when they launched AXON. Videos from multiple officers on the same incident could be synced up so you could change perspectives on the fly. Officers could record voice and written comments to place on the time line and supervisors could do the same after the fact.
     
  5. I used to be very opposed to body worn cameras (BWCs). However, I have become and enthusiastic supporter of them for patrol use. I presently use the VieVu system and we will likely be going full use by mid-year.

    I have had three IA investigations cleared within 30 minutes after video was reviewed.

    I also believe that insurers and risk managers will start to demand officers carry them, if nothing more than a layer of protection against friviolous lawsuits and complaints. A well written policy can both protect the officer using them AND capturing what is going on out there.

    I tell peers and groups I speak to that cops are now in the YouTube age and they had better assume that every minute of their job outside the station is being recorded. Act accordingly.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2012
  6. Technology often benefits us and sometimes we become it's victim. I recall years ago when I was assigned to the narcotics unit, we had begun recording street transactions on video cameras concealed in the car and aimed out the driver window. Drive up, bad guy approaches, sells dope. This became so common place that eventually the State Attorney's Office did not want to prosecute a case UNLESS it was captured on video tape.

    Both dash cams and body cams have advantages. Again, while dash cams often caught bad guys in incriminating acts, confessions to crimes etc., there have been instances where officers sacrificed tactics and good practice in the name of keeping everything immediately in front of the camera.

    Body worn and especially head mounted cameras give that "POV" perspective, but often still do not tell the entire story. Think of this, NFL referees will use camera shots from several different angles to determine what happened during a particular play, yet we will often times use a one and only available camera angle to judge another Officers actions.
     
  7. ZombieKing

    ZombieKing

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    Feb 25, 2009
    I wouldn't have a problem wearing a camera. As long as I can access the video after an incident.
     
  8. CJStudent

    CJStudent Fenced In

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    Nov 3, 2005
    KY
    The base security for the NG headquarters for the state uses them religiously at the gate. It saved the job of one of the guys there after a major complaint when he was wearing a personal one, so they went and got them for the whole crew.
     
  9. Mattz

    Mattz

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    Nov 16, 2005
    I don't agree with it. I'm okay with recording traffic stops, but as a profession we're getting to the point where if it wasn't recorded it didn't happen. That mentality is ridiculous.
     
  10. pal2511

    pal2511

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    Sep 15, 2002
    KS
    It sure would be sweet to have one of those Taser Axons but they are pricey.

    We have the Scorpion mini cameras. They are nice but battery life is about 30 min to an hour so I rarely use mine anymore because you have to constantly charge it.

    How well does those vievue cameras work?
     
  11. I've developed some training to educate the public and our prosecutors on this. Too often, the average citizen expects everything to be in HD from various angles. I have to teach about real life. Dovetailed with that is further encouraging and teaching our prosecutors that not everything can or will be recorded, especially when privacy concerns pop up.

    It is clearly spelled out in our pending policy that this will be allowed. Funny thing is, the ACLU in the Oakland area *****ed up a storm because officers were doing this. They complained that officers should not be allowed to recall from video. Never mind the fact that the ACLU there (along with other fringe organizations) demanded that officers wear cameras for "accountability" . . .

    Rather well considering. However, the image is minimal in low light and the microphone can be affected by wind, directional, etc. I'm getting a true 3.8 to 3.9 hours out of the cameras we are using. In full light or quieter conditions, they are great. I've used them many times for interviews.
     
  12. ArmaGlock

    ArmaGlock Glock Armorer

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    Dec 28, 2005
    Florida
    We don't have dash or body cameras and I honestly don't want them. I see the benefit of them, but in my opinion the way they are used by the media, the agencies, and all of the bleeding hearts to second guess what an officer does outweighs their benefit. Officers are getting hung out to dry daily for incidents that are "perceived" to be wrong by people and I feel that the cameras only aid the head hunters in many cases. We can be 100% right, but still be wrong. And if we did get them I sure as hell would fight against having to wear that stupid thing on my damn head, it's ridiculous.
     
  13. Kahr_Glockman

    Kahr_Glockman

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    Texas
    I used to be of the opinion that video wasn't needed. After I almost killed a guy on Christmas morning and caught the entire incident on audio and video recording, I am a believer. When it's the word of three to one odds dont look good. Video tells the truth, most of the time.
     
  14. CAcop

    CAcop

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    California
    What do you think the odds are of getting a witness sttement at a ghetto homicide is going to be with that camera on your head?
     
  15. GumbyDammit

    GumbyDammit Xtra CoCheese

    That's the part I dislike the most.

    ETA - Anyone ever see one of these? [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQkKGIFDWds"]GoPro Chesty Chest Mount Tutorial - YouTube[/ame] My kid does a lot of Parkour and wears one around. Excellent video quality and much better than wearing it on your head. It could probably be fitted to a duty belt as well.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2012
  16. Sharky7

    Sharky7 Boomshakalaka

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    Feb 21, 2009
    Not sure it will lighten the work load for police. Even with the taser axon evidence.com site - SA's are still going to want a report. If it's a 60 minute contact that yields a dope arrest, no way they are going to watch that whole thing. They want something they can read while walking from their table to the bench when the case gets called.

    Not sure everything should be recorded and on public record anyways. Think about FOIA. You're 19 old sister/daughter just got raped and is reporting the incident to a beat officer. Some a-hole FOIA's the video and puts it on youtube. Eh...

    My decision is still out on it. I think it's coming. Not sure if it is for the better or not though. I don't think it will be worthwhile either way until it is built into a badge or radio mic.
     
  17. coqui33

    coqui33 NRA Instructor

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    Jul 16, 2009
    Florida
    By "access", which do you mean? The ability to watch the footage? Or the ability to edit or delete it?
     
  18. DoogieHowser

    DoogieHowser Eh

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    :rofl: You honestly think no one sees through your little question there? Go back to GNG :upeyes:
     
  19. DaBigBR

    DaBigBR No Infidels!

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    Circling the wagons.
    He meant "access" as in alter, modify, and/or delete. It's a large conspiracy involving the highest levels of ZOG.
     
  20. DoogieHowser

    DoogieHowser Eh

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    VA, USA
    [​IMG]