Police on the ground and their feelings on surveillance footage

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A Chief of Police in the Los Angeles area is asking for more surveillance cameras and other surveillance equipment.

Police on the ground — actually doing the dangerous work in the street — have a lot of mixed feelings about surveillance equipment — especially if it’s in the form of in-car camera recorders, worn cameras, and worn audio recording devices.

Yes, those recording systems can capture evidence that exonerates the officer — but it also often captures moments that are very difficult to watch.  Those images are sometimes taken out of context and make for exciting television news. Great ratings for the news stations but sometimes major headaches for the officers.

Of course, the main focus and concern for adding these new technologies is, does it bring better safety to the citizens? Does it help solve crime?  Do the devices provide security in a more efficient way?

Although I haven’t seen studies that show this to be true, I believe that high quality security video cameras — in car, on the streets, and on officers — deter crime and solve crime, keeping criminals from committing more trouble in the future.

The following is an interesting story from the LA Times:
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/09/50000-reward-in-fatal-shooting-of-teen-in-south-la-park.html

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