Recently, the Oakland police began testing body mounted video cameras to record interactions between the police and the public. In the past, legal issues have arisen involving civilian recording events without permission from the police themselves, which is illegal in some states and hotly debated in others. Although legally debatable, having video evidence available of police and civilian interaction can be very valuable for trials and investigations.
The Oakland Police are currently one of the many police agencies that will test new body mounted cameras. These cameras clip on the front of the officer’s uniform and are about the size of a cell phone. Vievu has produced these cameras for the Oakland test and it has sold 1,100 cameras as well to other police agencies. These cameras can provide video evidence that can capture potentially valuable but overlooked details that may provide further evidence when the footage is analyzed and protect police officers from false allegations.
Many law enforcement experts are enthusiastic about the prospect of having recorded interactions between civilians and officers, stating that there would be less “he said, she said” accounts. Legal experts also agree that “the more video evidence, the better” (New York Times, 2011). Yet, it is important to have something in place that will help investigators sift through the video data. 3VR has developed a patented search product that structures data in pieces of useful event information to enable users to more quickly find what they’re looking for as they build cases.
3VR’s Video Intelligence Platform™ also integrates with 3VR CrimeDex, a secure online crime fighting network where public and private sectors can collaborate to share video evidence and images. 3VR Crimedex is only available to law enforcement, fraud, and loss prevention professionals, and the video data collected by these professionals can be shared across a secure network and utilized by a combination of teams during investigations. With the large amount of video data that the Oakland police and other police agencies using the body mounted cameras will acquire, having a system in place to manage that data and a network to share alerts would be an powerful combination for in-depth case building.