Not all body cameras are created equal. Some record for four hours, others twelve. Some have multiple components and wires, some do not. Unions are concerned about wired cameras shocking officers and the additional weight cameras carry for already-heavily equipped officers. More likely, however, is the risk of head injury for officers who would wear them on ridiculous looking head bands, should they be assaulted or involved in a situation where the camera is struck against their temple.
In a report he prepared for the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs Diagnostics Center (OJPDC), Michael White notes: “there has been no research examining health and safety issues associated with body-worn cameras.” It appears our government has done more research on the health and safety issues surrounding bean bag chairs and desk magnets than it has on what can be a valuable policing tool.
Police Chief Mike Goldsmith has ordered 300 body cameras for his officers – a purchase intended to improve transparency of policing and eliminate “he said/she said” disputes.
Excellent. This will help the NPD and the citizens they encounter.