Should We Put Cameras On Cops?

Following allegations police had stolen a laptop and a digital camera from a suspect’s house, San Francisco PD is considering equipping officers with a head-mounted video camera to document searches and arrests and make sure they’re being conducted appropriately. Is this a good idea? Take our poll and sound off.

One of the interesting things is that the cameras, which capture video directly from the officer’s perspective, have been used several times to exonerate officers. A trial run in Britain resulted in fewer false complaints against the police and more guilty pleas. In Arkansas, an officer who shot a man was cleared of all charges after video showed that he told the suspect to drop his weapon but the man refused nine times before lethal force was used.

Honesty cuts both ways. Cop cars already have cameras in them, and these would be cheaper and provide more useable evidence than people weaving back and forth in front of a static frame. So I say yes, let’s put cameras on cops.

San Francisco police to carry video cameras during arrests [SF Examiner]
Keeping Cops Honest with Body-Mounted Cameras [GOOD]
San Jose police get ear-mounted video cameras in battle for image [Christian Science Monitor]
Police Head Cameras Capture Action, Evidence [CBS]
Seattle Mulls Over Police Body Camera Option [KUOW]