Reviewing Body-cams Before Reporting?
Today 60 police officers will begin to wear body cameras, the introduction of the necessity of these cameras have been brutal, death ridden and long overdue, since the deaths of hundreds of unarmed men and women have been over proportionately ruled plausible by the court of law. Yet in recent times due to cellphone footage many officers have been exposed and often times only after the death of another human-being, cellphone footage now questions the belief that police are always right and rightly so when video footage combats a police report or charges against a civilian/suspect...
As one of the few state personnel besides the military that are allowed to carry life taking weapons, they are trusted with the lives of taxpayers, they are trusted with the ability to not only make life altering decisions but to do so under pressure. No one is saying that Police officers jobs are not without stress and risk but is any job without stress or risk? Yet Does a doctor who gets a belligerent patient suddenly decides to kill his patient or to make mistakes during a procedure? No they must remain calm and do their jobs to the best of their ability. So when we hear common excuses such as I feared for my life during a job that constantly put you at risk of fearing for your life it begs to ask the question as to why don't they simply remove themselves from a job that makes them scared enough to kill someone out of fear and not because of clear justifiable reasons.
There are a few questions I myself would like to ask, for instance if an officer is scared of his job, why does he not quit? If a police officer is in fear of the residents in a specific neighborhood, why not ask for a transfer? If an officer has had a negative/traumatic experience why does he not seek mental help, why do they not give police officer’s frequent evaluations for ptsd? Why do police officers don't have frequent mental evaluations for bias? It is my belief that anyone who can carry a gun in public should have frequent mental evaluations so as to avoid a wrongful death.
Now that that is out of the way
The new body cameras will be solely controlled by the officer in question. Meaning that the individual officers must turn on his/her body camera when he/she perceives someone to be a criminal. I believe that every encounter an officer has with civilians should be recorded, not just the ones they may perceive as a threat or criminal. Why would anyone doing something wrong perceive someone else as a threat? Which is the direct fear of the public that the NYPD will only put the cameras on when it is beneficial to them.It's a cause for concern, what about cases where the officer may have been the initial aggressor and puts his body camera on after the suspect or civilian in question reacts to whatever the officer may have done or said? That itself can warrant someone to be wrongfully accused and wrongfully portrayed by those have sworn to protect and serve. Officers are also allowed to review body cam footage before reporting. Apparently NYPD cannot edit or delete these videos yet there is a possibility of someone making a story up to fit footage, rather than letting the footage tell the story itself which is exactly what these body cams were meant to halt.
A call for more transparency and for there to be strict regulations for both civilians and police officers alike should be standard so as to not cost another unarmed life where there shouldn't be. I will report more as the story develops.