Righttorecord.org is a website that supports the public's right to record police officers, but was recently interviewed by the New Haven Register about its view on police wearing body cameras. Here are a few of the benefits and cons that are listed on the blog:
- "These cameras will help protect police against frivolous lawsuits
- These cameras will aid in police training, by providing a source of vivid real-life examples for recruits to learn from
- These cameras will help police and citizens to remember events better
- These cameras will provide necessary evidence for both prosecutions and civil rights lawsuits
- These cameras will supplement citizen-videos of officers, providing another point-of-view. They will record an officer’s literal viewpoint, and provide material for the state’s political or legal viewpoint.
- These cameras will incentivize police to act properly in their duties
- If a recording goes missing, that will raise appropriate questions, and could bolster a citizen’s credibility vis-a-vis an officer’s
"Some points I did not make to the New Haven Register, but would add include
- "Being recorded on the job can be stressful for officers (or anyone), but having a recording in their possession and control makes a recording less stressful
- These cameras will make officers more comfortable with citizens recording them
- These recording will he helpful for educating the community about police procedure and policy
- They’ve had these in many departments in Britain for a long while–not that Britain is a bastion of freedom, but they have been helpful there
- This is just another step along the line of recording interrogations, which I also strongly support"
The blog also mentioned possible downsides as cost, training and legislature. However, the recent report published by ODS Consulting details the cost savings from a project in Scotland. The report estimated that the reduction in crime during the project saved £346,000 in only three months (£1,386,472 per year).