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Cop films chap on body-worn cam because he 'complains about cops a lot'. Chap complains

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I'm inclined to agree. On the whole, body-cams are a good thing; they keep the police honest, and they provide crucial evidence (or counter evidence) that keeps the costs down in the court system - for example, if a complainant claims the police beat him up during arrest, but the body-cam shows that actually the complainant was attacking the police.

On the other hand, if recording in someone's home where that person is not a suspect (i.e. the police don't have a good reason to enter in the normal course of their duties, such as a warrant to arrest someone, or prevent the commission of a crime), the bare minimum should be to inform the person that they are recording and/or request their permission.

It's a bit of a tricky one though. I'm of the opinion that when worn, the cameras should be on at all times, and the officer wearing the camera should have no way of turning it off, or, crucially, accessing the footage. Anything they record should only then actually be accessible if it is known to contain something relevant, or the officer is the subject of a complaint. This is to protect both the public, and the police. Storage is cheap, and securely archiving it shouldn't be any sort of technical challenge. Of course, this case demonstraes that perhaps it is not so black-and-white.

Perhaps the ability to turn the camera off, with associated GPS logging would be a reaonable compromise, with the officer having to log a reason for doing so. What you don't want is the situation akin to the cop show trope where the officer removes their shoulder numbers before going into the cell to beat up the suspect. "Sorry sir, my camera isn't working, now where's my truncheon?"

You have to be able to guard against crooked cops, but on the whole, the vast majority are honest, and a fair number of people they have to interact with are not.

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