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LA Police Officers Suspected of Tampering With Their Monitoring Systems 322

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the watchers-hate-being-watched dept.
An anonymous reader writes "An internal audit conducted by the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) in March revealed that 'dozens of the [voice] transmitters worn by officers in Southeast Division were missing or damaged.' In the summer of 2013, this same division was found to have mysteriously lost 45% of the antennae placed on their cars to pick up the signals sent by their voice transmitters. The Southeast Division of the LAPD covers an area that has 'historically been marred by mistrust and claims of officer abuse.' For decades, the LAPD had been closely monitored by the U.S. Department of Justice, but a federal judge in 2013 decided to end that practice after being assured by the LAPD and city officials that the LAPD sufficiently monitors itself via dash-cams and voice transmitters. A formal investigation is currently being conducted to determine whether or not police officers intentionally subverted mandatory efforts to monitor and record their patrols."
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LA Police Officers Suspected of Tampering With Their Monitoring Systems

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  • Re:Easy fix (Score:3, Informative)

    by GrandCow (229565) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @12:29PM (#46705633)

    The antennas on the car are probably less than $10. The voice transmitters are probably $50-100. If they only do an audit once a year, it's a small price to pay for someone that doesn't want their actions being monitored.

  • by Thanshin (1188877) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @12:36PM (#46705709)

    Actually no, as you'd know if you had studied the subject, the law does not apply to the police.

    As a mnemonic rule, imagine they were oddly dressed politicians, or very humble rich people.

  • by kaoshin (110328) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @01:08PM (#46706033)
  • Fixed (Score:4, Informative)

    by jklovanc (1603149) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @01:17PM (#46706109)

    It seems to have been fixed:

    Instead, warnings went out at roll-call meetings throughout South Bureau, and new rules were put in place requiring officers to document that both antennas were in place at the beginning and end of each shift. To guard against officers removing the antennas during their shifts, Tingirides said he requires patrol supervisors to make unannounced checks on cars.
    "We took the situation very seriously. But because the chances of determining who was responsible was so low we elected to move on," Smith said, adding that it cost the department about $1,500 to replace all the antennas.
    Since the new protocols went into place, only one antenna has been found missing, Smith said.

  • by hawguy (1600213) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @01:18PM (#46706121)

    Anyone remember the police beating case in Maryland where the dash cams of ALL SEVEN police cars on the scene simultaneously malfunctioned?

    No ... and a Google search turns up nothing. Can you provide a reference?

    Here's a reference:

    http://www.wtop.com/?nid=428&s... [wtop.com]

    Seven cars responded, all required to have dashcams, yet somehow no dashcam footage of the incident was available.

    And here's an article with links to other cases where police video disappeared:

    http://www.theagitator.com/201... [theagitator.com]

    And I found it with my first Google search for

  • by gnick (1211984) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @03:09PM (#46707235) Homepage

    That's how I see it. If I'm at home, don't monitor me. If I'm accessing a vault full of cash, OK maybe. If I'm flying an armed fighter jet, I won't object too hard if they want to track me every time I go off course and engage my weapons.

  • Re:Asinine (Score:5, Informative)

    by mrex (25183) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @03:21PM (#46707357)

    I'm leery of reducing a job as important as police officer to call-center working conditions.

    That's a straw man argument. Nobody has recommended that we "reduce police officer(s) to call-center working conditions". Recording their on-duty interactions is as appropriate for police officers as it is for pilots. When something goes wrong and innocent people die, the public deserves to know why so that lessons can be learned. That's why we have cockpit voice recorders, and that's why we should have video and audio recording of all police interaction with the public.

    If they aren't doing anything wrong, they have nothing to hide, right...?

  • Re:Asinine (Score:4, Informative)

    by mrex (25183) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @04:45PM (#46708183)

    You are mistaken about how cockpit voice recorders work. They record much more than "the last two minutes of talk before a crash". They typically record two hours on a continuous loop, and in the wake of the MH370 event that will probably be increased to eight hours or more.

  • by rsilvergun (571051) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @09:34PM (#46710243)
    I'm always hearing how my personal privacy is the most important freedom I've got, meanwhile my wages have been declining for 30 years. You never hear the Koch brothers complaining about their personal privacy. How much do you know about them? What do you suppose would happen to you if you tried to find out?

    Money is freedom. Economic security is freedom. You're not free so long as somebody can deprive you of food/shelter/health care/etc.

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