I’ve been posting (here and here) about the increasing interest and mounting evidence to support the use of body worn video (BWV) camera systems for police. BWV pilot studies have been ordered in New York by the judge who found the New York Police Department’s stop and frisk program unconstitutional, so the question for many is what these BWV systems do, and what they offer police and the public.
Reveal, a new radio program jointly sponsored by the Center for Investigative Reporting and the Public Radio Exchange (PRX), ran an interesting story on BWV in its pilot episode, which aired on September 28 in my area. “Policing on Camera” put the interest in BWV and its growing use in the context of how a real police officer makes use of BWV, and what he thinks of this tool after using it for some time. Click on the brief video, and you’ll get his point of view — both in his own words and (literally) from the camera, as he makes an arrest. Sergeant Michael Williamson of the BART police department makes it clear that BWV is easy to use and benefits him and his fellow officers in multiple ways; he won’t go out on patrol without it. Thanks to Reveal, you don’t have to take my word for it; see what he says.