While most police officers have the most honorable intentions and deserve our utmost respect, some do take advantage of their positions.
However, one town thinks it has come up with a way to lower the unnecessary use of force among cops:
For Rialto, California, this novel yet simple solution is working. And it’s not just affecting the cops wearing the cameras. From Policy Mic:
Take the city of Rialto, California, for instance. In February 2012, the city’s 70 police officers had to take part in a controlled study, obligating them to wear a tiny camera that filmed all their interactions with the public. The results were incredible: In the first year of the cameras’ introduction, complaints against Rialto police officers fell by 88%, while use of force by officers fell by almost 60%.
“When you put a camera on a police officer, they tend to behave a little better, follow the rules a little better,” Rialto Police Chief William A. Farrar told the New York Times. “And if a citizen knows the officer is wearing a camera, chances are the citizen will behave a little better.”
The results of this and further test runs have led other cities to consider outfitting their police officers with cameras. Proponents have dismissed the move’s understandable privacy concerns, saying that the argument is moot when it comes to curbing the abuse of power among cops.
While requiring police officers to wear on-body cameras is clearly getting results, does it take government surveillance too far? Would you support implementing this policy in your own town?