3 Questions to Ask Before Putting Cameras on Cops

Discussion in 'Lounge' started by tallbump, Dec 9, 2014.

  1. tallbump

    tallbump Supporting Member

    I saw this article, and it prompted me to start this thread. I had been meaning to anyways, but this article brings up some good topics of discussion.

    Currently, I tend to lean towards not liking the idea. To me it one of those giving up liberties in the name of security issues. Yes, I know surveillance cameras are everywhere. I also know you don't have a whole lot of right to privacy once you leave your home...however, I don't know that I like the idea of putting MORE cameras in the streets. I think it's a further progression of the downward spiral.



  2. Bull

    Bull Just a Man Supporting Member

    Well the lovely people of Ferguson have shown us that video footage won't sway their opinion...... Brown's "mother" still says her son "allegedly" robbed the convenience store....

  3. Hermitt

    Hermitt Hey! Get Off My Lawn! Member

    I'm not sure what to think of this yet.

    I've seen that in other countries, like Russia, lots of people, private citizens, have been using 'dash cams' to protect their own innocence. Too many people that are encountered are just liars and make up crap out of thin air (like the lame stream media) and without the video footage it becomes difficult to see just who is telling the truth.

    I could see the police cameras being used in this way, to indicate that the officer is doing his job correctly. This would be like an extension of the police 'dash cams' that record their traffic stops that many are already now using. How is that working out? I haven't heard much....
  4. SWAGA

    SWAGA No longer broke... Lifetime Supporter

    911 response, flagged down, traffic stop, basically anytime a violation of a law is being investigated.

    Erase at the end of every shift.
    Use 3 hrs SD memory cards or whatever it is.
  5. Question 1 is easily dealt with; police are public employees and therefore lose any "privacy" while on their shifts.
    I work a twelve hour shift. Every phone call, e-mail, and computer activity I engage in is recorded and can be searched at any time. Why? Because I am not entitled to privacy during my shift. Every interaction I engage in, whether it be with a co-worker or civilian, I am accountable for. Why? Because as a public employee, I am a representative of my employer.
    Sure, I can take a piss or shower off after PT with relative privacy, but while performing my duties, privacy is not only nonexistent, it's not expected.
    Police are on duty their entire shift. I got no problem with them turning their cameras off when taking a bathroom break or something, but otherwise, it should be on their entire shift due to the unpredictable nature of their work; sh*t can hit the fan at any second, and they need to be held accountable for every single one of their actions, whether it's a parking ticket or being forced to fire upon a suspect.
  6. ajole

    ajole Supporting Member

    NE Utah
    I can see SOOOOOO many problems with all this.

    First off, despite privacy issues, no one will be happy if you erase everything too fast. They will say you are destroying evidence.

    So OK, lets keep it. For how long? Weeks? Months? Years? In what format? On what media? Who will administer this database, pay for the time and equipment, and act as a liason with the public and the court? Who will be allowed access, and under what conditions? What are the legal requirements regarding privacy vs liability? Is this going to be on-line, or not?

    Lawsuits to get video, lawuits to suppress video, lawsuits about chain of custody, access, privacy...it could get ugly.
  7. Hermitt

    Hermitt Hey! Get Off My Lawn! Member

    Since many departments already use 'dash' cams, I would think the same regulations that apply to those would be applied to 'body' cams.
  8. SWAGA

    SWAGA No longer broke... Lifetime Supporter

    Look how people initially responded to dash cams.....same technology
  9. Bull

    Bull Just a Man Supporting Member

    Still all a moot point, if people refuse to see video evidence of the truth, and burn down cities anyway....
  10. SWAGA

    SWAGA No longer broke... Lifetime Supporter

    It's pretty much inevitable that it's going to be used.
    If we have the right to film every encounter with a cop so do they.
    I personally believe it's worth it.
    It's for the protection of the cop also.
    Maybe a switch on the holster too, gun gets drawn camera comes on.
  11. ajole

    ajole Supporting Member

    NE Utah
    Sure, but those are cases where something official is going on.

    I'm not against the idea exactly, I'm just saying its a bigger issue than many think.

    Cops talk to CI's, the bad guys lawyers subpoena the cops film for the day, and there it is. Cops say things that are totally legal, like offering to let a guy off on a small offense to get the big fish...but those outside the system won't understand.

    Heck, we get video all the time and still argue about it.

    Not sure it won't start more problems than it solves.:(
  12. moona11

    moona11 King of you Monkeys Lifetime Supporter

    I would like them to protect the officer and public from all the BS. Keep them straight on both sides of the camera. Like the dash cam. But also it can be used wrong. Everyday people deserve privacy. Look at all the crap on TV with dash cams and cell phones. It has its good and its bad.
  13. planosteve

    planosteve Lifetime Supporter

  14. SWAGA

    SWAGA No longer broke... Lifetime Supporter

    I'm against them being constantly on.
    They should be turned when responding to an incident in progress.
    Cop can't delete the footage, only back at the station with a code or special tool.
    Personal conversations and the like are not recorded.
  15. ajole

    ajole Supporting Member

    NE Utah
    Agreed. The problem is...what if a little personal conversation turns bad? Then when the public wants the camera footage, there is none?

    We had the guy with the sword here in Utah, the cops that dealt with him were not really expecting trouble, even offered the guy a ride...but it went bad.

    "The initial interaction between Hunt and the police officers, who had been dispatched in response to a report of a suspicious person carrying a sword in public, began as a "nonthreatening type of conversation," Buhman said.
    Hunt was calm and nonconfrontational, "other than the fact that he had sword in a public place," he said. The sword was in its sheath.
    But as Hunt was speaking with the police officers, he "abruptly and without any apparent provocation withdrew the sword from its sheath and immediately swung or stabbed it toward least one of the officers," Buhman said.
    The police officers responded by firing a total of three shots at Hunt, probably hitting him once or twice, the investigation found. Hunt then turned and ran, still holding the sword.
    Buhman said the officers' "belief that deadly force was necessary to prevent death or serious bodily injury was reasonable, given the fact that Mr. Hunt was swinging or stabbing at them with a three-foot sword and was in close enough proximity to them that one of the officers physically retreated -- and one jumped back -- to avoid being hit by that sword blade."

    They ended up shooting him in the back to prevent him from attacking anyone else.

    The ONLY things most news report want to talk about is his race, shot in the back while running away, and how it's "just a replica" blade. Steel, sharpened, but you know...not really a sword.

    A video might be good in this case. But would they have known to turn it on in time?
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2014
  16. Back2School

    Back2School Member

    In this day and age there is no reason you couldn't have triggers (actions - not weapon triggers) that turn them on automatically, upload to the cloud/local servers and store there.

    I dont know what dispatchers are responsible for, but I assume they have to create logs of every call they dispatch (maybe I assume too much). It could be handled remotely by the dispatcher when sending the officers out or trigger off of their radio (not sure if its still just a CB type radio or if anything has gone to more wifi type connections). SWAGA's idea on a weapon would be good also. Shoot, with shock sensors, they could be set to go off with any shock - low enough that runing could turn it on or any type of struggle. IDK just brainstorming.
  17. ajole

    ajole Supporting Member

    NE Utah
    Those are possibilities. Loud noises, key words, proximity, as in dash cam is on all the time, personal cam comes on if the officer gets X feet from vehicle.

    Hand on weapon, or when thumb break or whatever security on the holster is removed or is defeated.

    Could be something like that.
  18. 1. Privacy bit is solved with the public employee bit; they should neither deserve nor expect privacy in the execution of their official duties. They ink the contract, they reap the benefits/consequences.

    2. Actually, those questions are quite easy to answer. Datacenters contract out, and often have tera to petabytes (or more) of storage space to store any and all forms of media. Their customers include both private and public companies, agencies, and organizations, police departments and federal LE agencies being some of them. Police departments have webmasters and IT personnel whose entire jobs it is to keep the networks running; they can easily take on the task of making sure aforementioned datacenters receive and are storing the video. That's half the job of our IT people.
    Access would be just like who has access to the evidence locker; anyone who is authorized and signs a log. It actually makes it easier because apart from a physical log, a simple digital sign-in log will provide a digital footprint of who's been accessing the video. Make it read-only to prevent deletions or edits.

    Really as long as you treat it as any other evidence, like dashcam footage, CCTV footage, etc., it doesn't get complicated at all. Really it's rather simple.
  19. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    This makes me giggle.

    All data is exploitable. All data systems are exploitable. As a general rule to make them not worth the effort to exploit takes more time, work, and technology up front, which means more cost. These are body-cams, not DoD isolated networks. While purchasing departments may not go with the absolute lowest cost products with user manuals written in Chinglish, they're still not going to be top of the line. They'll probably have the same security level as iToasters, which is pretty weak when you get down to it.

    The reason that dashcam video doesn't get hacked is because most cops really are honest, see it as a tool which helps them, and basically don't want to hack the data.

    Peace favor your sword,
  20. moona11

    moona11 King of you Monkeys Lifetime Supporter

    Just thought of a reason not to have them. I talk to myself and ***** about drivers or other asshats. This thing would get me into trouble ;-)