Body Worn Cameras




Yount, Roger

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Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas (LEMIT)



Law enforcement officers are repeatedly being questioned on their interactions with the citizens within their community. Not only are law enforcement officers being questioned, they are being recorded and often displayed in a negative light from the recordings, which ultimately damages the credibility and legitimacy of law enforcement. The best way for law enforcement to combat this issue is to use the same technology for their benefit. Body-worn cameras are small cameras police officers can wear on their body, and the use of body-worn cameras by police officers during citizen interactions can lower the number of complaints and use of force issues as well as aid in the process of both criminal and internal investigations. The goal of this publication is for law enforcement agencies to understand both the benefits and drawbacks of body-worn cameras. The advocates of body-worn cameras believe that the cameras provide increased transparency and citizen’s views of law enforcement; they have a civilizing effect on citizens and officers; they can increase prosecutions in criminal and civil litigation; and they provide valued training opportunities (White, 2014). Those who oppose body-worn cameras discuss issues such as privacy concerns for both citizens and law enforcement officers and the cost of implementing a body-worn camera program (White, 2014). The research indicates that the implementation of body-worn cameras provides benefits that offset any apprehensions, and law enforcement agencies should implement a body-worn camera program. These body-worn cameras can and will improve accountability. Improved accountability leads to increased transparency, ultimately leading to improved public image and legitimacy.


Wearable Video Devices in Police Work, Body Cameras