c.pdf - Body-Worn Cameras Policy I BACKGROUND SCOPE AND...

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Body-Worn Cameras Policy I. BACKGROUND, SCOPE AND PURPOSE A. Body-worn cameras are an effective law enforcement tool that can reduce violent confrontations and complaints against officers. Body-worn cameras provide additional documentation of police-public encounters and may be an important tool for collecting evidence and maintaining public trust. B. This policy is intended to provide officers with instructions on when and how to use body- worn cameras. C. The Department has adopted the use of body-worn cameras to accomplish several objectives, including: 1. Body-worn cameras allow for accurate documentation of police-public contacts, arrests, and critical incidents. They also serve to enhance the accuracy of officer reports and testimony. 2. Audio and video recordings enhance the Department’s ability to review probable cause for arrest, officer and suspect interaction, and evidence for investigative and prosecutorial purposes and to provide additional information for officer evaluation and training. 3. Body-worn cameras may also be useful in documenting crime and accident scenes or other events that include the confiscation and documentation of evidence or contraband. D. The Department recognizes that video images cannot always show the full story nor do video images capture an entire scene. The use of body-worn cameras does not reduce the requirement to provide thorough written documentation of an incident. Persons reviewing recordings must also be cautious before conclusions are reached about what the recordings show. II. OVERVIEW A. The body-worn cameras should be utilized to (1) collect evidence that can be used in the prosecution of criminal offenses, (2) record contacts with the public in order to secure unbiased evidence in connection with investigations, (3) allow for supervisory review to ensure that department policies and procedures are followed, and (4) capture footage that would be helpful for training.
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