Saturday, December 06, 2014

Body cameras protect both civilians and the police.

First let me say that I have a deep respect for most of the people that police our neighborhoods and understand that they perform a necessary and at times dangerous job. It's a job I want no part of as I'm sure that cops see people at their worst and have to deal with some overwhelming situations. To those good cops who protect us, THANK YOU.

In light of the tragic deaths of both Eric Gardner and Michael Brown at the hands of the police many have suggested that police officers wear body cameras, and several departments such as Newark NJ and New York City are instituting pilot programs.

For some reason some cops and or their unions seem to be against the idea and think it will drastically affect how cops do their jobs. They say cops will be so worried about what they can and can not do that many will simply stop policing or be too busy over thinking a situation to do their jobs. They believe cops would do this to avoid being caught in any wrongdoing on camera.

My response to that is if you are doing things the right way, what are you afraid of? If you are following police procedures and treating all citizens with respect why would having to wear a camera bother you at all.

Police should keep in mind that body cameras also help THEM. There are many instances where the cameras showed that the police were in the right, and video has exonerated them. I see no reason why GOOD cops would have a problem wearing a body camera.

I also realize that a body camera doesn't solve everything. Those cops determined to do wrong will simply shut the camera off and depend on the fact that far too many District Attorneys and grand juries give them the benefit of the doubt. There must be punishment for those who don't have the cameras on when interacting with the public for this to work.

I think body cameras are a good idea and as long as cops are acting as officers and not overseers they will have nothing to worry about when wearing one.

George L. Cook III

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