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Police Cameras

Mon, 04 Jul 2016 20:26:00
Article by:
Sam Felsing
SFPD body camera. Image via Google.
San Francisco has seen its fair share of police-related violence in the last year. There was the shooting of Mario Woods in December, and then the shooting death of an unarmed woman in her car in May — which ultimately led to the resignation of Police Chief Greg Suhr. Each incident brought about calls from citizens and politicians alike to hold police officers more accountable for their actions. On August 1, the San Francisco police force should get one step closer to full accountability.
    
August 1 is the expectant date that police officers within in San Francisco will begin wearing body cameras. This new development in police procedure comes after months of negotiations between the Police Officers Association and the Police Commission on proper usage of the cameras. Much of the negotiation was on when officers should be allowed to view videos of incidents in which they are involved.
    
In December, the Police Commission voted to let the Chief of Police have discretion on when officers should view videos of incidents, but after negotiation with the police union, it was decided that the new policy will be that officers will have to give an initial statement on incidents before being allowed to view their own videos of them. After viewing the videos, officers will then be subject to more lengthy interviews on the content.
    
While some police officers will begin wearing cameras in August, not all of the police force will be equipped. Mayor Lee’s recent budget proposal has set aside $6.2 million for a 2-year rollout of the cameras.

 
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