Do police body cameras increase the public's willingness to report crime?

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Do police body cameras reduce use of force by the police?
22 studies
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1
Increasing Cooperation With the Police Using Body Worn Cameras
"What can change the willingness of people to report crimes? A 6-month study in Denver investigated whether Body Worn Cameras (BWCs) can change crime- reporting behavior, with treatment-officers wearing BWCs patrolling targeted street segments, while control officers patrolled the no-treatment areas without BWCs. Stratified street segments crime densities were used as the units of analysis, in order to measure the effect on the number of emergency calls in target versus control street segments. Repeated measures ANOVAs and subgroup analyses suggest that BWCs lead to greater willingness to report crimes to the police in low crime density level residential street segments, but no discernable differences emerge in hotspot street segments. Variations in reporting are interpreted in terms of accountability, legitimacy, or perceived utility caused by the use of BWCs. Situational characteristics of the street segments explain why low-level street seg- ments are affected by BWCs, while in hotspots no effect was detected"
AUTHOR
Barak Ariel
PUBLISHED
2016 in Police Quarterly
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ADDITIONAL STUDIES TO CONSIDER ADDING TO LIST
Total additional studies: 21
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Information, apprehension, and deterrence: Exploring the limits of police productivity
"The capacity of police departments to solve crimes and apprehend offenders is low for many types of crime, particularly crimes of profit. This article reviews a variety of studies of police apprehension and hypothesizes that an important determinant of the ability of the police to apprehend criminals is information. The complete absence of information for many types of crime places fairly clear upper bounds on the ability of the police to effect solutions. To discover whether these boundaries are high or low we analyzed data from the 1973 National Crime Panel about the types and amount of information potentially available to police through victim reports and patrol activities. The evidence suggests that if the police rely on information made readily available to them, they will never do much better than they are doing now. On the other hand, there appears to be more information available to bystanders and passing patrols than currently is being used, which suggests that surveillance strategies and improved police methods for eliciting, recording, and analyzing information supplied by victims and witnesses might increase the probability of solving crimes and making arrests. In light of this we review a few possibly helpful innovations suggested in the literature on police productivity and procedure. © 1979."
AUTHORS
George E. Antunes
Wesley G. Skogan
PUBLISHED
in Journal of Criminal Justice

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Body-worn cameras--Rapid adoption in a low-information environment?
"The article focuses on the rapid increase in the adoption of body-worn camera (BWC) technology as an tool of policing. Topics discussed include benefits of technology in policing, effects of technology on both the police organization and its relationship with the community, and the need of understanding the public's views on police body cameras."
AUTHOR
Cynthia Lum
PUBLISHED
in Translational Criminology

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Violent and Nonviolent Crimes Against Sex Workers: The Influence of the Sex Market on Reporting Practices in the United Kingdom
"Previous research has shown that sex workers experience extremely high rates of victimization but are often reluctant to report their experiences to the police. This article explores how the markets in which sex workers operate in the United Kingdom impact upon the violent and nonviolent crimes they report to a national support organization and their willingness to report victimization to the police. We use a secondary quantitative data analysis of 2,056 crime reports submitted to the U.K. National Ugly Mugs (NUM) scheme between 2012 and 2016. The findings indicate that although violence is the most common crime type reported to NUM, sex workers operating in different markets report varying relative proportions of different types of victimization. We also argue that there is some variation in the level of willingness to share reports with the police across the different sex markets, even when the types of crime, presence of violence, and other variables are taken into account. Our finding that street sex workers are most likely to report victimization directly to the police challenges previously held assumptions that criminalization is the key factor preventing sex workers from engaging with the police."
AUTHORS
Daiga Kamerāde
Teela Sanders
Laura Connelly
PUBLISHED
2018 in Journal of Interpersonal Violence

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Police Body Cameras and Us : Public Perceptions of the Justification of the Police Use of Force in the Body Camera Era
"Using an experimental design, this research looked at the medium of presentation (text, audio, video) through which members of the public were exposed to a controversial police shooting. Furthermore, this research tested whether the officer's immediate reaction to the shooting (crying, talking, or calling his attorney) across mediums of presentation impacted the public's perception of justification. We found that the medium of presentation did matter; those who were exposed to the shooting through video were significantly more likely to perceive of the shooting as unjustified when compared to those who were exposed to the shooting through text or audio. However, officer's reaction did not have an impact on perceptions of justification for the shooting. Implications of these findings are discussed. What is the significance of this article for the general public? This study suggests that in addition to the good that police-worn body cameras may provide, the cameras also provide a new window into the profession that may negatively impact the public's perception of police officers."
AUTHORS
S. Culhane
M. McCamman
PUBLISHED
in Translational Issues in Psychological Science

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On-Officer Video Cameras: Examining the Effects of Police Department Policy and Assignment on Camera Use and Activation
"On-officer video camera (OVC) technology in the field of policing is developing at a rapid pace. Large agencies are beginning to adopt the technology on a limited basis, and a number of cities across the United States have required their police departments to adopt the technology for all first responders. Researchers have just begun to examine its effects on citizen complaints, officers' attitudes, and street-level behavior. To date, however, there is no research examining how departmental policy and assignment of officers to a camera program affect officer behavior and opinions of the cameras. Policy and assignment have the potential to impact how officers react to the technology and can affect their interactions with citizens on a daily basis. This study measures camera activations by line officers in the Mesa Police Department during police-citizen encounters over a ten-month period. Data from 1,675 police-citizen contacts involving camera officers were subject to analysis. Net of controls (i.e., the nature of the crime incident, how it was initiated, officer shift, assignment, presence of bystanders and backup, and other situational factors), the bivariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were used to examine how departmental policy (mandatory versus discretionary activation policy) and officer assignment (voluntary versus mandatory assignment) affected willingness to activate the cameras, as well as officer and citizen behavior during field contacts."
AUTHOR
Allyson Roy
PUBLISHED
in ProQuest Dissertations and Theses

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On-Officer Video Cameras: Examining the Effects of Police Department Policy and Assignment on Camera Use and Activation
"On-officer video camera (OVC) technology in the field of policing is developing at a
rapid pace. Large agencies are beginning to adopt the technology on a limited basis,
and a number of cities across the United States have required their police
departments to adopt the technology for all first responders. Researchers have just
begun to examine its effects on citizen complaints, officers' attitudes, and streetlevel behavior. To date, however, there is no research examining how departmental
policy and assignment of officers to a camera program affect officer behavior and
opinions of the cameras. Policy and assignment have the potential to impact how
officers react to the technology and can affect their interactions with citizens on a
daily basis. This study measures camera activations by line officers in the Mesa
Police Department during police-citizen encounters over a ten-month period. Data
from 1,675 police-citizen contacts involving camera officers were subject to
analysis. Net of controls (i.e., the nature of the crime incident, how it was initiated,
officer shift, assignment, presence of bystanders and backup, and other situational
factors), the bivariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were used to examine
how departmental policy (mandatory versus discretionary activation policy) and officer
assignment (voluntary versus mandatory assignment) affected willingness to activate the
cameras, as well as officer and citizen behavior during field contacts."
AUTHOR
Allyson Roy
PUBLISHED
2014 in Arizona State University

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Crime Reporting Behavior
"Police researchers have long argued that favorable evaluations of the police eventually lead to citizens' willingness to cooperate with the police. However, this assumption has barely been studied empirically. The current study examines the association between attitudes toward the police and crime reporting behavior of victims. Furthermore, the study explores the influence of victims' characteristics on their decisions to report crime to the police. Using field data originally collected in Ghana, the study found that victims' levels of confidence in the police and satisfaction with police work positively predict their decisions to report sexual assault and robbery to the police. Moreover, findings revealed that age, marital status, and employment status are important predictors of victims' reporting behavior. Several practical and theoretical implications of the results are discussed."
AUTHOR
Francis D. Boateng
PUBLISHED
2016 in Journal of Interpersonal Violence

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Can Cameras Stop the Killings? Racial Differences in Perceptions of the Effectiveness of Body-Worn Cameras in Police Encounters,
"Recent killings of blacks by police have renewed a national discussion about crime, racism, unjust treatment, and implicit bias. Outfitting police officers with body-worn cameras (BWC) is heralded by federal and state lawmakers as one solution to providing more transparency during police encounters. Missing from this dis- cussion is what everyday citizens think about the potential effectiveness of BWC. Using data on residents of Prince George’s County, Maryland, this study explores racial differences in views about police treatment and the effectiveness of BWC. We find that nonwhites report more fear of and mistreatment by the police than whites. Regarding BWC, we find that respondents are either supporters or skeptics. On one hand, respondents either believe that BWC will illuminate the difficulties of policing—police supporters—or create more transparency to hold officers more accountable for their actions—citizen supporters. On the other hand, skeptics fall into one of two types—respondents who think that BWC may put police officers more at risks— privacy skeptics—or those who do not see BWC as structurally changing the power dynamics between citi- zens and police officers—structural skeptics. We conclude by discussing how BWC may operate as a solution to improve interactions between citizens and the police but not necessarily alter power relations."
AUTHORS
Connor Powelson
Kris Marsh
Rashawn Ray
PUBLISHED
in Sociological Forum

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Bystander’s Willingness to Report Theft, Physical Assault, and Sexual Assault
"This research examines bystander willingness to report three different crimes to the police or campus authorities among a college student sample (n = 295). Twelve original vignettes varied anonymity when reporting, bystander's relationship with the offender (friend or stranger), and crime type. A factorial analysis of variance showed that main effects were found for crime type, bystander's gender, and bystander's relationship with the offender; anonymity was not significant. The physical assault was the most likely to be reported (4.47), followed by theft (3.26), and sexual assault (2.36). Women were more likely than men to report each crime type, and bystanders who were good friends of the offender were less likely to report than strangers. No two- or three-way interactions were significant, but a significant four-way interaction indicated that anonymity, relationship with the offender, and bystander's gender predicted willingness to report for the sexual assault scenario. "
AUTHOR
Sarah C. Nicksa
PUBLISHED
2013 in Journal of Interpersonal Violence

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The impact of general police officer outlooks on their attitudes toward body-worn cameras
"PurposeThe past five years have seen a growth in studies of police body-worn cameras (BWCs). A large share of the research focused on individual officer attitudes toward these new law enforcement tools. The scholarship, however, focused almost exclusively on their positive and negative perceptions of body cameras or correlations between those attitudes and general officer characteristics. This study examined whether the influence of negative or “concerning” policing attitudes toward body cameras is mediated by other variables, such as officer outlooks toward law enforcement, officers' perceptions of citizen cooperation or their opinions of the public.Design/methodology/approachAn online survey was distributed to a convenience sample of police offices from two Northeastern police agencies.FindingsFindings indicate that the relationship between experience and concerning perceptions of body cameras is mediated by distrust in citizens and perceived civilian cooperation. Further, an office's outlooks regarding aggressive law enforcement tactics do not have a direct effect on concerning perceptions of body cameras, nor do they serve as a mediator between years of experience and concerning perceptions of body cameras.Originality/valueFindings uncover the nuance and complexity of studying and understanding police officer outlooks and perceptions of BWCs. Future experimental designs should include general outlook measures."
AUTHORS
Dae-Young Kim
Scott W. Phillips
Joseph Gramaglia
PUBLISHED
2020 in Policing: An International Journal

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Off the Record? Arrestee Concerns about the Manipulation, Modification, and Misrepresentation of Police Body-Worn Camera Footage
"Police body-worn cameras (BWC) have become the latest technological device introduced to policing on a wave of panacean promises. Recent research has reported the perspectives of police officers, police management, and the general public, but there have been no studies examining the views of police arrestees. Remedying this significant omission, this article presents findings generated from interviews with 907 individuals shortly after their arrest. Overall, we report a strong in principle support for police body-worn cameras amongst this cohort, particularly if the cameras can be operated impartially. The findings are organised into a trilogy of prominent and interrelated concerns voiced by the police detainees, namely the potential for the manipulation, modification, and misrepresentation of events captured by police body-worn cameras. The findings are discussed in a broader context of the “new visibility” of police encounters and contribute much needed findings to understand the culturally specific ways in which different publics experience and respond to visual surveillance."
AUTHORS
Emmeline Taylor Murray Lee
Emmeline Taylor
PUBLISHED
2019 in Surveillance & Society

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Police Officers’ Perceptions of Body-Worn Cameras in Buffalo and Rochester
"Police body-worn cameras have been advanced as a solution to disparate perceptions among the citizenry, public officials, community leaders, and the police themselves in the highly contested arena of police-citizen encounters. As with previous innovations in policing it is important that programs or policies developed for street-level application be planned in advance, and the opinions of police officers should be understood prior to implementation. This study provides survey responses from police officers in Buffalo and Rochester regarding their perceptions of body-worn cameras. Survey items were borrowed from prior research in Phoenix and Los Angeles. It also included items intended to measure the officer’s opinions about examining camera images prior to writing a report, an issue that is the subject of some disagreement among policy makers. Findings suggest similar attitudes toward body cameras not only among Buffalo and Rochester police officers, but also with police officers in other agencies. Almost all respondents agree or strongly agree that police officers should have the ability to review body camera images prior to writing a report. The policy implications of this finding are discussed."
AUTHORS
Scott W. Phillips
Joseph A. Gramagila
PUBLISHED
2017 in American Journal of Criminal Justice

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A Descriptive Study on Police Body Cameras and Civil Liability Cases
"As a result of several highly publicized deaths at the hands of local police officers over the last two years, the public has placed increased pressure on the police for greater transparency and accountability. The use of police body cameras has been one suggested remedy. However, there is a minimal amount of quantitative research about the impacts of police body cameras on the community, the police, and their interactions. This explorative study examines the potential fiscal impact of body-worn cameras by investigating the relationship between the cost of a police body-worn camera program and the annual total of financial civil liability pay outs resulting from police misconduct lawsuits in Oakland, California, from 2003 to 2015. The impact of the body-worn camera program on officer assaults was also examined. While it was hypothesized that the cost of a body-worn camera program would be warranted due to a decrease in annual civil liability settlements, the results indicated that there was no effect. There was, however, a significant decrease in total assaults on police officers. Therefore, while a financial cost-benefit argument cannot be made based on the presently available data, officer safety appears to be greatly enhanced by a body-worn camera program, which can consequentially reduce the cost of healthcare, workman compensation, as well as costs related to missed work. However, due to the limited data and lack of control variables, the present study is only explorative and no definite cost-benefit conclusions to either direction should be drawn based on this study alone."
AUTHOR
Nicolas Berdjis
PUBLISHED

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Willingness to report crime to the police
"
Purpose
The purpose of this paper is to understand the reporting intentions of traditional and cybercrime victimization, and the role of procedural justice in explaining sources of variation.


Design/methodology/approach
Using Amazon’s MTurk program for opt-in survey participation, 534 respondents across the USA considered ten victimization incidents and expressed their likelihood of reporting each incident to the police as well as their belief that the police would identify and arrest the offender.


Findings
As expected, reporting intentions increased with the seriousness of the incident for both traditional crime and cybercrime. However, reporting intentions were generally slightly higher for incidents that occurred in the physical world, as opposed to online. Likewise, beliefs that police could identify and arrest and offender were lower for cybercrime compared to traditional crime. Consistently, predictors of reporting to the police and belief in police effectiveness hinged heavily on procedural justice. Other predictors for these behaviors and beliefs are also discussed.


Originality/value
This study uniquely compares reporting intentions of potential victims of parallel victimizations occurring in-person and online, thus providing firm comparisons about reporting intentions and beliefs about police effectiveness in addressing traditional and cybercrime.
"
AUTHORS
Amanda Graham
Teresa C. Kulig
Francis T. Cullen
PUBLISHED
2019 in Policing: An International Journal

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Police Officers’ Perceptions of Body-worn Cameras in Buffalo and Rochester
"Police body-worn cameras have been advanced as a solution to disparate perceptions among the citizenry, public officials, community leaders, and the police themselves in the highly contested arena of police-citizen encounters. As with previous innovations in policing it is important that programs or policies developed for street-level application be planned in advance, and the opinions of police officers should be understood prior to implementation. This study provides survey responses from police officers in Buffalo and Rochester regarding their perceptions of body-worn cameras. Survey items were borrowed from prior research in Phoenix and Los Angeles. It also included items intended to measure the officer’s opinions about examining camera images prior to writing a report, an issue that is the subject of some disagreement among policy makers. Findings suggest similar attitudes toward body cameras not only among Buffalo and Rochester police officers, but also with police officers in other agencies. Almost all respondents agree or strongly agree that police officers should have the ability to review body camera images prior to writing a report. The policy implications of this finding are discussed."
AUTHORS
Scott W. Phillips
Joseph A. Gramagila
PUBLISHED
in American Journal of Criminal Justice

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Police Body-Worn Cameras
"In the wake of the police shooting of Michael Brown in August 2014, as well as the subsequent protests in Ferguson, Missouri and around the country, there has been a call to mandate the use of body-worn cameras to promote accountability and transparency in police- civilian interactions. Body-worn cameras have received positive appraisal from the NAACP Legal Defense & Education Fund, and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). The latter has stated that their widespread use “[has] the potential to be a win-win, helping protect the public against police misconduct, and at the same time helping protect police against false accusations of abuse.” In 2013, the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) sent surveys to 500 of the 12,501 police departments in the U.S, and of the 254 who completed the survey only 63 of the departments reported using body-worn cameras. However, law enforcement agencies throughout the country are now rapidly adopting the cameras. In December 2014, President Obama proposed the Body-Worn Camera Partnership Program, which aims to invest $75 million through a 50% investment matching arrangement with states and localities to cover video storage and equipment expenses, with the goal of underwriting the costs of 50,000 body-worn cameras. The program is part of a broader three-year, $263 million initiative to strengthen community policing, and the funding plan is part of President Obama’s proposed FY2016 budget."
AUTHORS
danah boyd
Alex Rosenblat
Alexandra Mateescu
PUBLISHED
2017 in Center for Open Science

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The Benefits of Body-Worn Cameras: New Findings from a Randomized Controlled Trial at the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department
"Many community stakeholders and criminal justice leaders have suggested placing
body-worn cameras (BWCs) on police officers improves the civility of police-citizen
encounters and enhances citizen perceptions of police transparency and legitimacy. In
response, many police departments have adopted this technology to improve the
quality of policing in their communities. However, the existing evaluation evidence on
the intended and unintended consequences of outfitting police officers with BWCs is
still developing. This study reports the findings of a randomized controlled trial (RCT)
involving more than 400 police officers in the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police
Department (LVMPD). We find that BWC-wearing officers generated significantly fewer
complaints and use of force reports relative to control officers without cameras. BWCwearing officers also made more arrests and issued more citations than their nonBWC-wearing controls. In addition, our cost-benefit analysis revealed that savings from
reduced complaints against officers, and the reduced time required to resolve such
complaints, resulted in substantial cost savings for the police department. Considering
that LVMPD had already introduced reforms regarding use of force through a
Collaborative Reform Initiative prior to implementing body worn cameras, these
findings suggest that body worn cameras can have compelling effects without
increasing costs."
AUTHORS
James R. Coldren
Omer Alper
William Sousa
Anthony Braga
Denise Rodriguez
PUBLISHED
2017 in National Criminal Justice Reference Service

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Police Body Cameras: Mending Fences and How Pittsburgh is a Leading Example
"<p>After the police brutality deaths of Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and Freddie Gray, amongst others, many call for increased accountability through police officer body-worn cameras. The following Note discusses the potential benefits of body camera use, the concerns that body cameras raise, relevant current and pending legislation in Pennsylvania, and whether police body cameras can be used to address race relations in connection with police officer brutality.</p>"
AUTHOR
Danielle Evans
PUBLISHED
in Pittsburgh Journal of Technology Law and Policy

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Body-worn images: Point-of-view and the new aesthetics of policing
"Police organisations across much of the Western world have eagerly embraced body-worn video camera technology, seen as a way to enhance public trust in police, provide transparency in policing activity, reduce conflict between police and citizens and provide a police perspective of incidents and events. Indeed, the cameras have become an everyday piece of police ‘kit’. Despite the growing ubiquity of the body-worn video camera, understandings of the nature and value of the audiovisual footage produced by police remain inchoate. Given body-worn video camera’s promise of veracity, this article is interested in the aesthetics of the camera images and the socio-cultural construction of the cameras as tellers of truth. We treat body-worn video cameras as image-making devices linked to techniques and technologies of power, which construct and frame police encounters in specific ways, and we suggest that the aesthetics and point-of-view nature of the image contribute greatly to the truth-value that the images acquire. This article begins by providing an historical context for the use of cameras and images in policing. We then introduce our framework of visual criminology and present theories of point-of-view as a construct in the diverse areas of gaming, pornography and the visual arts, as well as in television and cinema. The article deploys the cinematic use of point-of-view to unpack the affective impact and aesthetic of the police body-worn video camera footage. We suggest that viewers of the footage are placed in the position of the corporeally absent police officer whose experience has been recorded by a viewfinderless device. This generates a vacillating interplay between subjectivity and objectivity, given that the alleged faithful recording of the event by the body-worn video camera presents a singular perspective and incomplete document that may not necessarily capture the full context of the law enforcement event."
AUTHORS
Murray Lee
Carolyn McKay
PUBLISHED
2019 in Crime, Media, Culture: An International Journal

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Self-Awareness to Being Watched and Socially-Desirable Behavior: A Field Experiment on the Effect of Body-Worn Cameras on Police Use-of-Force
"This study was conducted to determine whether body cameras worn by police officers would reduce the incidences of police-use-of-force. Findings from the study include the following: shifts in which officers did not use body cameras experienced twice as many incidents of police-use-of-force compared to shifts where officers used body cameras; and the number of complaints against the police for excessive use of force dropped from 28 complaints in the 12 months prior to the study to 3 during the study period. Researchers were unable to compute a treatment effect due to the large overall reduction in the number of complaints.

The study was conducted with the assistance of the Rialto Police Department. All 54 frontline officers in the department participated in the study. The officers were randomly assigned to either the control group – no use of body cameras, or the experimental group – use of body cameras. The officers in the experimental group were instructed to wear the body cameras during their entire shift and to record all public-police encounters. The content of the videotapes were analyzed to determine the effect of the camera on the incidences of police-use-of-force.

The findings from the analysis suggest that the presence of the cameras resulted in an almost 50 percent reduction in the total number of incidents of use of force, and that when cameras were not used (the control group), citizen complaints were almost 10 times higher compared to the experimental group. Suggestions for future research are discussed. Tables, figure, and references"
PUBLISHED

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Introduction: The privacy and surveillance implications of police body cameras
"Body-worn cameras are being acquired and deployed by police departments around the world at an increasingly rapid pace. Like many technologies before them, body-worn cameras promise to change the way police work is done -- and, indeed, this is a primary claim made by civil liberties and other advocacy groups who are promoting their adoption as a means of "civilizing" the police and increasing police accountability (e.g., Stanley 2015). However, for many, the use of police body-worn cameras also raises interesting and vital privacy and surveillance-related concerns. Like other forms of surveillance, bodyworn cameras gather information and preserve it in a form amendable to processing and analysis but, unlike traditional CCTV or other static cameras, they can also make their way into private homes -- and anywhere else police choose to go -- and record everything they see and hear. These body cameras often come with a rarely discussed range of surveillance capacities that, precisely because they are mobile, raise unique privacy and other issues."
AUTHORS
Bryce Clayton Newell
Randy K. Lippert
PUBLISHED
in Surveillance and Society

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QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER
Do police body cameras reduce use of force by the police?
22 studies
Submitted by: TMifune 55

Add question
What additional question do you want someone who searches for "Do police body cameras increase the public's willingness to report crime" to consider?