Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Crime Privacy Technology

Salt Lake City Police To Wear Camera Glasses 307

Posted by Soulskill
from the to-protect-and-record dept.
Psychotic_Wrath writes "The Salt Lake Police department will be much more transparent with their law enforcement. A program is being rolled out to require officers wear glasses equipped with a camera to record what they see. Of course, there are several officers opposed to this idea, who will resist the change. One of the biggest shockers to me is that the police chief is in strong support of this measure: 'If Chief Burbank gets his way, these tiny, weightless cameras will soon be on every police officer in the state.' With all the opposition of police officers being recorded by citizens that we are seeing throughout the country, it is quite a surprise that they would make a move like this. The officers would wear them when they are investigating crime scenes, serving warrants, and during patrols. Suddenly Utah isn't looking like such a bad place to be. Now we just need to hope other states and departments would follow suit. It sure will be nice when there is video evidence to show the real story."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Salt Lake City Police To Wear Camera Glasses

Comments Filter:
  • And the downside? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Lyrata (1900038) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:02PM (#41984513)
    Sorry, but this doesn't make SLC seem much more appealing to me (aside from the Mormon thing). I don't think I want police recording me just by virtue of me being near a patrol.
    • by Synerg1y (2169962) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:04PM (#41984537)

      Also, what's to stop a cop from taking them off to do something under the table? A million excuses come to mind.

      • Re:And the downside? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by crakbone (860662) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:36PM (#41984961)
        UHP has already done similar. This girl would routinely leave her mic in her car when doing DUI stops. http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865564397/UHP-comes-under-fire-over-internal-memo-questioning-troopers-arrest-practices.html?pg=all [deseretnews.com]
      • Re:And the downside? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by gstoddart (321705) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:39PM (#41985023) Homepage

        Also, what's to stop a cop from taking them off to do something under the table?

        Well, then you pretty much have to say "any police action which doesn't have the corresponding video will result in disciplinary action".

        You won't be able to stop the outright corrupt cops, but if someone did an arrest and didn't have the glasses on to record what actually happened -- they might get thrown out of court.

        At least, that seems a sane way. We hear far too often about cops deciding they can take/break cameras, delete images, and all sorts of other things they're not really legally allowed to do. Enforcing some level of accountability on them might actually do some good.

        There's an awful lot of police officers who either don't know, or don't care, about what they're legally allowed to do.

        • by geekoid (135745)

          I think:
            "any police action which doesn't have the corresponding video will result in no charges being brought against the accused."

          The police force will deal with that through normal channels now in place.

          Plus, if you bring it up in court, the officer is going to need a good reason, and a history of it happening will lead to a law suit.

        • by J'raxis (248192)

          Well, then you pretty much have to say "any police action which doesn't have the corresponding video will result in disciplinary action".

          Should be even stronger: Require that video evidence by camera-wearing cops be used in court in lieu of the officer's testimony. If they were supposed to be wearing the camera and weren't, their testimony will not be allowed as a substitute.

          • by xenobyte (446878) on Thursday November 15, 2012 @02:08AM (#41989135)

            Well, then you pretty much have to say "any police action which doesn't have the corresponding video will result in disciplinary action".

            Should be even stronger: Require that video evidence by camera-wearing cops be used in court in lieu of the officer's testimony. If they were supposed to be wearing the camera and weren't, their testimony will not be allowed as a substitute.

            Perfect! - Yes, that's exactly what must be done. Require the camera and require that its recording be used, possibly in addition to a normal testimony. But no recording means no testimony, and if no recordings are available, only physical evidence recovered can be used, and only where it isn't in dispute.

            Another obvious thing would be that any insults by the arrestee recorded automatically results in a fine for each if brought to court. People need to respect the police if they expect the police to respect them, and step one is to talk politely and avoid profanity. A fine of $50 for each insult recorded would be reasonable and the fine must be paid in full within 14 days. No extension and no payment plan. This ensures that it will be felt and thus hopefully make people think before they insult.

        • by rtb61 (674572) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @07:06PM (#41986521) Homepage

          Still all in all, a better balance would be that the police turn them on when ever they are going to interact with the public and the rest of the time they are off. Good police officers still deserve a measure of privacy and personal respect. Bad police officers who fail to turn them on prior to interacting with the public should be fired.

          Problem with these cameras of course, bad officers will soon learn to strike out of camera view with fist and truncheon to escalate violence, whilst their partner 'looks' the other way and then deny it with 'proof' of video. Much like DNA evidence, better not get too wrapped into what the camera 'sees' unless they go with a fish eye lens and high resolution so they can extract the scene they are after.

          • Re:And the downside? (Score:4, Interesting)

            by JonMartin (123209) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @08:15PM (#41987189) Homepage

            Problem with these cameras of course, bad officers will soon learn to strike out of camera view with fist and truncheon to escalate violence, whilst their partner 'looks' the other way and then deny it with 'proof' of video. Much like DNA evidence, better not get too wrapped into what the camera 'sees' unless they go with a fish eye lens and high resolution so they can extract the scene they are after.

            Yes, yes, a thousand times yes. Photos and video are incredibly powerful and persuasive. Even without doctoring them, they can be tremendously misleading. Present a video in court and a jury will believe that if something is not in the video IT DID NOT HAPPEN. If someone doesn't believe that they can be misled with unaltered photos and video, they are a fool. It happens every day in the news we read and watch.

      • by Gordonjcp (186804)

        "Where the hell is your footage between 11am and 12:30pm? You were scheduled on shift, so where were you?"

      • Combine these with x-ray vision glasses, and terrorism would drop to zero. http://www.buy.com/prod/unisex-halloween-x-ray-vision-glasses/223443714.html?listingId=250782707 [buy.com]
  • by AG the other (1169501) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:03PM (#41984519)

    When it comes down to a trial the recording will be lost. Bet on it.

    • by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:12PM (#41984647)

      When it comes down to a trial the recording will be lost. Bet on it.

      And in the absence of otherwise compelling evidence, the jury will see the "lost tape" as evidence that the cops are lying, and they will vote to acquit. Jurors aren't stupid. They know that cops lie all the time, and it is already quite common for cops to be disbelieved.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        The jury won't be told that a recording ever existed. They still won't believe the police, but the lack of a video won't be admissible.
        • by GodInHell (258915)
          Unlikely -- since destruction of evidence through negligence is evidence, in and of itself.
          • by sumdumass (711423)

            Unless you have some sort of proof the evidence was destroyed, it wouldn't be destruction or anything over whatever the officer or technical representatives would claim. This is common today in trial where for whatever reason other then intentionally destroying evidence, a video that could have or likely should have been available isn't. And it is also common that someone would claim the video could vindicate them too.

        • by swillden (191260)

          The jury won't be told that a recording ever existed. They still won't believe the police, but the lack of a video won't be admissible.

          At the very least they'll know there should be a recording, and I don't see any reason the defense attorney would be barred from asking the officer on the stand "Were you wearing your department-issued officer-cam during the incident? Have you reviewed the footage from your camera? Was the footage consistent with your testimony here today?"

          • by Applekid (993327)

            The jury won't be told that a recording ever existed. They still won't believe the police, but the lack of a video won't be admissible.

            At the very least they'll know there should be a recording, and I don't see any reason the defense attorney would be barred from asking the officer on the stand "Were you wearing your department-issued officer-cam during the incident? Have you reviewed the footage from your camera? Was the footage consistent with your testimony here today?"

            If you can afford a defense attorney. The provided ones for those too poor to afford it won't even get there and go straight to plea bargain, mysteriously disappearing video or not.

            • by 0111 1110 (518466)

              I was able to afford a defense attorney (by borrowing the money), but I also took a plea bargain because I was betting that the people on my jury would be idiots and very pro-cop. Taking a plea is often the most rational course whether you have a private attorney or not. Only if I had had incontrovertible proof of my innocence would I have turned down a plea with no jail time rather than risk several years in jail and a serious criminal record. Going to trial is also much more expensive even with a private

        • But once it becomes 'standard issue' for cops in a particular jurisdiction to be recording everything, juries are going to expect that there is a recording by default. The fact that the prosecution would fail to submit a recording into evidence would probably signal to the jury that something is fishy...
      • by TheGratefulNet (143330) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:23PM (#41984799)

        I don't know the answer but I would guess that more often than not, when its you or I in the courtroom against a cop, the cop will usually be believed. shiny blue uniform, all that crapola.

        juries are stupid. only idiots make it thru voire dire.

        sorry, but our system finds the least thinking of our citizens and hires THEM for jury duty.

        I would not want to be judged by my 'peers', truth be said.

        • by onkelonkel (560274) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:38PM (#41985003)
          In Canada we used to believe the word of an RCMP officer over the word of a citizen. The we had the Dziekanski case, where the video clearly showed that the cops were lying. Not only did they lie in their initial reports, but they continued to lie at the public inquiry, even though the video evidence clearly showed they were lying. I think if it came to a "he said she said" with the Mounties now, the citizen would be more likely to be believed.
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          I don't know the answer but I would guess that more often than not, when its you or I in the courtroom against a cop, the cop will usually be believed. shiny blue uniform, all that crapola.

          juries are stupid. only idiots make it thru voire dire.

          sorry, but our system finds the least thinking of our citizens and hires THEM for jury duty.

          I would not want to be judged by my 'peers', truth be said.

          Not necessarily true. At least not from an anecdotal case. I served on a jury recently on a misdemeanor DUI case. We heard evidence for 2 days, and ended up deliberating for another day and a half. All of the discussion was deliberative, was calm. We were given specifically in instructions that because the testimony came from a cop it didn't necessarily automatically make it correct. We were also specifically given instructions as to what to consider and what we were not allowed to consider as evidenc

          • by 0111 1110 (518466)

            It's nice to hear stories like yours, but remember that it's still a roll of the dice for a defendant. That's why there are lots of innocent people who when faced with trusting 6-12 psuedo-random (not truly random due to voir dire) strangers aren't willing to do so and take deals, even ones that result in jail time. If you cannot prove your innocence beyond a resonable doubt it is quite often not worth the risk of getting a bunch of pro-police Republicans who believe where there is smoke there is fire and c

      • by 0111 1110 (518466)

        And in the absence of otherwise compelling evidence, the jury will see the "lost tape" as evidence that the cops are lying, and they will vote to acquit. Jurors aren't stupid. They know that cops lie all the time, and it is already quite common for cops to be disbelieved.

        Uh. What are you basing this on? Would you really be willing to turn down a good plea deal and risking years in prison based on the jury being 100% rational and not believing the cop's story just because he/she is a cop? There are lots of people like that.

        One problem with that sort of reasoning is that it ignores the intense desire the average person has to not believe that police ever commit crimes themselves. I think the idea of it scares people too much and they won't believe it without the video to prov

    • by skegg (666571)

      When it comes down to a trial the recording will be lost. Bet on it.

      It depends:

      Sometimes the footage goes missing [smh.com.au].

      Other times it is salvaged [news.com.au].

    • by garcia (6573) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @05:26PM (#41985533) Homepage

      Minnesota Valley Transit Authority buses are all equipped with multiple cameras both internally and externally. When I have either witnessed issues which could be considered safety hazards to the buses and/or the people riding, I have requested these feeds. Most of the time I am told the camera was not functioning at the time and they'd investigate why: http://www.lazylightning.org/mvtas-multimillion-dollar-bus-2-0-is-a-failure [lazylightning.org]

      When they were in the right they were quick to release the tape: http://www.lazylightning.org/mvta-rider-alleges-racism-over-bus-incident [lazylightning.org]

      This is exactly what will happen here.

  • by aardvarkjoe (156801) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:04PM (#41984523)

    If Chief Burbank gets his way, these tiny, weightless cameras...

    I assume that you get weightless cameras from the same store that physics professors get their "frictionless inclines" and "massless pulleys" from?

  • Round 1: FIGHT! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sgbett (739519) <slashdot@remailer.org> on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:04PM (#41984527) Homepage

    "Privacy Advocates" vs "Police Transparency Enthusiasts"

    Should be a good battle.

    • A real problem many are accurately mentioning is that it won't necessarily increase transparency because usually, on cases of abuse of authority, the recordings "fail" or "are lost" protecting illegal or wrongful activities by the officers.

      There's a handful of examples with car cams.

  • by Raelus (859126) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:05PM (#41984543)

    Much like other police footage, it will be impossible to get a hold of unless the police actually want it publically released. Nothing resembling Rodney King will ever be released to the public because of these glasses.

    • by SeaFox (739806) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:54PM (#41985201)

      Plus they will use it as an excuse to prevent people from doing their own recording. "You can turn that camera off now, this incident is already being recorded by our glasses cameras should the record be needed".

      • by 0111 1110 (518466)

        That ship has sailed already. In every state now I think there are rulings that support recording of the police as long as the camera is within view. Hidden recordings are still questionable in some states. Because of the risk of the cop seizing the camera and trashing it or destroying the media in some way I think hidden recording should be allowed as well.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by onyxruby (118189)

      Interesting example you cite with Rodney King. What wasn't mentioned until well after the riots is that Rodney King was a known violent offender to the local police. More to the point he was a known violent offender high on drugs, with a gun - in his hand - and the cops were trying to get him to drop it instead of shooting him.

      This was a direct inspiration to police departments around the country to start buying tazers which at that point were not at all widely used. I empathize with your intent, but you'l

      • by russotto (537200)

        Interesting example you cite with Rodney King. What wasn't mentioned until well after the riots is that Rodney King was a known violent offender to the local police. More to the point he was a known violent offender high on drugs, with a gun - in his hand - and the cops were trying to get him to drop it instead of shooting him.

        Don't make bullshit excuses for the cops. Rodney King did not have a gun. Nor was he high (he tested positive only for trace amounts of marijuana), though he was drunk.

    • by 0111 1110 (518466)

      Never underestimate the stupidity of the average cop. In my state videos used to be taken during arrests and roadblocks, but they were losing too many cases. The video evidence was helping the defendants more often than it was helping the prosecution. So, while I'm sure there was much deleted footage, some did get through and save innocent people from prison. I'm not thrilled with the privacy issue of police recording everything they see, but it's much better than relying on a jury to be as skeptical of the

  • by Sparticus789 (2625955) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:05PM (#41984551) Journal

    I feel sorry for the guy that has to review the footage of the officers. It would defeat their purpose to install an "I have to pee" pause button.

    • Re:As long (Score:5, Funny)

      by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:14PM (#41984671)

      I feel sorry for the guy that has to review the footage of the officers. It would defeat their purpose to install an "I have to pee" pause button.

      By the time they are five, most guys have figured out how to do this without looking down. Some of us can even do it in the dark. Just keep practicing.

    • Re:As long (Score:5, Funny)

      by interkin3tic (1469267) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:43PM (#41985077)
      I don't know.

      Lawyer: "What are we seeing?"

      Officer: "Well, we're in a high speed chase with the plaintiff in the stolen car... right about now we perform a pit maneuver, forcing the suspect off the road, he attempts to make a run for it at which point the arresting officer tackled him and brought him to the ground, I run over to assist... and at this point I really needed to use the restroom so I did and the camera cuts out. When the video resumes twenty minutes later (I drank a LOT of coffee), the plaintiff has clearly bashed his head against the ground numerous times until he was comatose. I would have prevented him were I not urinating. For twenty minutes."
      • by dwillden (521345)
        Naw, they don't need to lie like that. The officer can claim that "Just as I jumped out of the car the seatbelt managed to catch the edge of my glasses and pulled them off, I could have spent the next thirty seconds trying to find and put them back on or I could go assist my fellow officers, who also all managed to knock their glasses off one way or another, in trying to restrain the accused in his attempts to bash his head against the ground repeatedly. Sadly even with the six of us trying to restrain him
    • "It's so weird, suspects are suddenly only attacking us and forcing us to shoot them while we're peeing."

  • So whats the catch? Does it still count as "evidence" in court? Can a defendant use the footage against the police?

  • by darkeye (199616) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:07PM (#41984567) Homepage

    this doesn't change anything unless the cameras are always on, and the public can see all recordings at will.

    if not so, the recordings will only be used when it is favorable for the police, but not the other way around

    • even if the video is not used, there should be gap-tests that PUNISH the officer if periods of time 'go missing' on video.

      you know this won't happen; they won't be called on their BS.

      but do expect a lot of gaming and BS to go on.

      this is no gift to citizens. they have an angle and they are playing it. we won't benefit from this, be assured ;(

    • by swillden (191260) <shawn-ds@willden.org> on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:40PM (#41985029) Homepage Journal

      I don't think the public will or should ever be able to see all the recordings at will. Police officers are often in places and looking at things that the public does not have a valid interest in seeing -- not because of the officers, but because of the rights of the public with whom they're interacting.

      I'm sure the defense would be able to subpoena the relevant segments of recordings, though, and the police will have some explaining to do if they're routinely not available.

  • Two way street (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:08PM (#41984573)

    Have we stopped to consider that this may increase the number of things people get written up for because the officer will be less likely to 'let it slide'? How rampant is police abuse really? Sure, I've seen cops be dicks about things, but I've also had them let me off the hook. If everything they were doing was being recorded, I don't think they would have been as lenient.

    • Re:Two way street (Score:5, Insightful)

      by cyberchondriac (456626) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:23PM (#41984809) Journal
      I don't subscribe to this paranoid hivemind stereotyping that *all* cops are violent, corrupt bastards either; like you said, sure, some are asshats, and get into the "biz" for all the wrong reasons (power, authority) and I hate those pricks (I've known a few), but not all cops. There really are good guys out there too. The bad just get the most publicity.
      That said, most cops are given a measure of leniency when exercising their discretion: if they want to give you that speeding ticket, they can; likewise if they're in a good mood and you're not an asshat at them, they can just let you off with a warning (I've had that happen) - even if the RADAR showed you speeding, they're allowed to let you slide if they decide to, so I tend to doubt this would interfere with that side of things, honestly -unless it was a much more serious offense, and in that case, no one should be sliding anyway, really.
      • by 0111 1110 (518466)

        I don't subscribe to this paranoid hivemind stereotyping that *all* cops are violent, corrupt bastards either; like you said, sure, some are asshats, and get into the "biz" for all the wrong reasons (power, authority) and I hate those pricks (I've known a few), but not all cops. There really are good guys out there too. The bad just get the most publicity.

        As a recent victim of police brutality and the resulting 'cover charges' I'm not the most unbiased person, but will you at least admit that it makes you feel better about the world to think the way you do? Your view is awfully tempting for emotional reasons is it not? I mean isn't the world a nicer place without a bunch of evil, violent thugs running around with badges, falsely accusing people of serious crimes, beating the shit out of anyone they like whenever they like, and even killing people on occassio

    • Re:Two way street (Score:5, Insightful)

      by rsborg (111459) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @05:20PM (#41985461) Homepage

      Have we stopped to consider that this may increase the number of things people get written up for because the officer will be less likely to 'let it slide'? How rampant is police abuse really? Sure, I've seen cops be dicks about things, but I've also had them let me off the hook. If everything they were doing was being recorded, I don't think they would have been as lenient.

      I'm going to assume you're not black, latino or homeless.

    • by Rich0 (548339)

      Well, the other side of that is that there would be much more pressure to reform laws. If EVERYBODY who drive 56mph in a 55 zone got a fine every time this happened you'd see a huge uproar, since the speed limits are usually unreasonable (by design 20% of the population is SUPPOSED TO BE violating them at any given time, and if anything they're set even lower than that).

  • by TubeSteak (669689) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:09PM (#41984601) Journal

    For the sake of argument, let's assume that everyone in the Salt Lake PD gets a camera.
    Now the question becomes: who gets to review the footage and for what reason.

    That's where the real devil is.
    The union is going to fight for the most restrictive conditions possible in order to limit reviews of the footage.
    Because, god forbid, the bosses troll through the footage looking for misconduct instead of only checking it when allegations are made.

    So don't think that equipping the police with cameras is a panacea.
    My guess is that it won't be accessible under public records laws
    and the footage will only be used in court cases or when formal complaints are made.

    • by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:24PM (#41984831)

      For the sake of argument, let's assume that everyone in the Salt Lake PD gets a camera.
      Now the question becomes: who gets to review the footage and for what reason.

      Anyone who has a subpoena from a court, either because they are charged with an offense, or because they have a civil suit against the police. This is exactly how it works with any other evidence collected by the police. Was this supposed to be a hard question?

      • by TubeSteak (669689)

        Anyone who has a subpoena from a court, either because they are charged with an offense, or because they have a civil suit against the police. This is exactly how it works with any other evidence collected by the police. Was this supposed to be a hard question?

        It's not supposed to be a hard question, but like many things in life, in practice it is more difficult than you would expect.

        Especially since you couldn't be bothered to read the rest of my post,
        where I go into detail about other situations where someone might want to review the footage.

        And I didn't make those scenarios up. They are positions taken by police unions when dashcams were being fitted to cars.

        • by swillden (191260)

          And I didn't make those scenarios up. They are positions taken by police unions when dashcams were being fitted to cars.

          And we can see how that worked out. Why would this be different?

          • by TubeSteak (669689)

            And we can see how that worked out. Why would this be different?

            Because what's best for the policeman's union may not be what's best for the general public?

            We have an opportunity for a fully accountable police force.
            These eyeglass cams are going everywhere that dashcams won't and I'd rather not see that accountability get neutered.

            • by swillden (191260)

              And we can see how that worked out. Why would this be different?

              Because what's best for the policeman's union may not be what's best for the general public?

              And the way it worked out is that any defense attorney or plaintiff's attorney can subpoena the dashcam videos, and will get them, regardless of whether the policeman's union likes it or not. What alternative would be better for the public?

    • I'd guess that the unions would push for giving the officer discretion at the time for what is recorded and what is not. Perhaps they'll claim it's for the privacy of the accused as well. The accused that they have arrested, fingerprinted, strip searched, and published the mugshots for.

      The police suggest that citizens in public places have no expectation of privacy from drug searches, pat downs, or whatever else, while simultaneously suggesting that officers in public places have an expectation of pr
  • by Anonymous Coward

    If all officers are required to wear these, any time there is a question of what the cop did or said, vs what you did or said, if they can't provide the video they should accept your word. No more wrongful charges of resisting arrest or assaulting an officer. If it's not on video it didn't happen.

  • What's the surprise (Score:5, Interesting)

    by viperidaenz (2515578) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:11PM (#41984627)
    The police don't want people making recordings because they can't stop it being used out of context.
    They already put cameras in their cars.
    In my country a whole police oversight investigation was launched because the media published a photo using the "look I'm holding up the hollywood sign" perspective to make it look like an officer was point his gun at the head of a teenage who was face down on the ground. Turned out the police officer was pointing his gun at the ground 3 metres away while walking in a different direction. The investigation wasted a lot of time and resources because there was no footage from another perspective.
  • by Maximum Prophet (716608) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:12PM (#41984641)

    It sure will be nice when there is video evidence to show the real story."

    Unfortunately, there's always a sampling bias with any recording device. The "real story" could easily be right off camera, or between frames.

    Of course, if there are enough of these, and multiple officers at the scene, you might be able to stitch together the whole scene. On the other hand, most police mistakes occur at night in challanging situations for small video cameras.

  • by dwillden (521345) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:17PM (#41984721) Homepage
    He's on record in many instances against our freedoms and rights, he's not a fan of privacy or the right to record his officers on duty. And as for SLC, well this is a city that will cite you for idling too long, waiting to pick your kids up on a cold winter day with below freezing temps or a hot summer day with 100+ temps, this is a city that finds every little fine and penalty it can to drive visitors away from it. And this is par for the course. As others have noted it will be nearly impossible for them to "find" the footage if it helps your defense. However if it proves your guilt they'll be sure to have it ready for the prosecution.

    And why glasses? Not every officer wears glasses. Yes many with good vision do wear sunglasses during the day but not all and what about at night? Rather if they really want to put camera's on their officers they should look at what other communities in Utah have been doing for a few years now, pin-hole camera's mounted in their ties. Far less burdensome as they already all wear a tie as part of the uniform, now the camera just makes the tie-tack a little larger.
    • by oxfletch (108699)

      Presumably because glasses will turn with your head / field of vision, whereas a tie will not.

      I guess a hat would work too.

  • by NinjaTekNeeks (817385) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:19PM (#41984747)
    There is a constant us vs. them mentality with the general public and the police. Even with a motto of "protect and serve", it is often obvious that this is not what the bad cops intend. With video recordings, weeding out the bad cops will be very easy, which will lay groundwork for the good cops to continue to build a relationship with the community.

    When the police are a menace to the neighborhood then the neighborhood will not work with them, they will not come forward with evidence and they will not testify. If the police can improve on these relations it is likely people will be more forthcoming with information.

    This is a win for everyone involved, however as others have stated I have a feeling that the footage will not be as freely available as we would like.
    • The police have power over us (it's a power that we grant them as part of their job). Power corrupts and attracts the corrupt, maybe not everyone every time, but often enough that every major police force in the world is going to have a handful of officers who simply should not be given that power. That small handful is more than enough to turn the majority of citizens against the police if they are allowed to continue to operate.

      It doesn't have to be kicking down the wrong door at 4 AM with guns blazing,

  • Let's just skip this and go straight to the Matrix. Make all of life virtual, so we can replay it if there is a trial.
  • Sorry chief, my glasses/camera fell off just as the perp started hitting himself in the head with my baton several times. I tried to stop him.

  • And just like the dashboard cameras, any shenanigans will have been conveniently off-camera. Anything incriminating you will be taped and ready. Anything incriminating them will have been coincidentally lost or the camera just happened to be broken at the time of the incident. Electronics are just so fussy these days...

  • What about data storage / battery life? and how much and for long is that video stored for?

  • by vlm (69642) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:37PM (#41984989)

    I think its odd they skipped the whole audio era. You can buy a little flash drive recorder that'll record for hours right now, for practically nothing. Its hard to find a smart phone that doesn't come with an audio recorder app. Yet I never heard of the cops doing audio recording in the past. Odd. You'd think it would be almost as useful. Imagine the jury listening to the slurred speech of a suspected drunk driver at trial, etc.

    • Anything a suspects SAYS os protected by the fifth amendment, so the jury would never hear the drunk. Add to that federal and state "wiretapping" laws prevent audio recording, but not video. Maybe tjey could do it within the law, but "wiretapping" laws are a bit of a minefield.
    • by suutar (1860506)
      wiretap laws, maybe?
  • I'm not exactly sure what you can do with thousands of hours of footage of donuts but they have TV series where they film people's storage units so it wouldn't be the worst reality show out there.
  • by Crypto Gnome (651401) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @04:47PM (#41985123) Homepage Journal
    That's nice for a start - but you need at least two more things:

    - GPS tracklog
    - accelerometer/orientation tracklog

    THEN you would not only know what the camera was looking at, but from where (GPS) and from what viewing angle/direction (orientation).

    In theory it would allow you to post-process logs from multiple officers into a virtual-scene.

    PLUS you need to have legislation which guarantees people the right to view the logs and imposes massive fines and other penalties for "oops, we seem to have lost that footage" probably including an immediate dismissal of any case.
  • Seems like this should help getting evidence against criminals as well.
    It gives an unbiased account in instances when all we had was the officers word and the footage of fleeing criminals can be studied in detail to try and identify them.

  • I for one welcome our new RoboMormon overlords.
  • by trout007 (975317) on Wednesday November 14, 2012 @05:21PM (#41985475)

    I always thought it would be cool to run a congressman as a reality candidate where they were broadcast live 24/7 their entire term.

The key elements in human thinking are not numbers but labels of fuzzy sets. -- L. Zadeh

Working...