“By establishing these policies now, we’ll ensure that our city can implement a truly transparent and accountable body camera program as soon as possible”
SAINT LOUIS – Today, Senator Jamilah Nasheed (D-St. Louis) called on the Board of Alderman to generate guidelines for the use of body cameras by St. Louis city police officers. Nasheed says that the city must be ready to fairly and effectively implement a body camera program as soon as its funding is secured.
Nasheed is a longtime advocate of using body cameras to improve the relationship between police and the public. She has proposed body camera bills in the Missouri Senate and recently supported a ballot initiative to fund body cameras in St. Louis.
“It’s clear the people of St. Louis want body cameras – a majority of the city voted to fund body cameras earlier this month,” said Senator Nasheed. “That’s why it’s vital that our local officials take this important step to restore the public’s and the police’s trust in the system by establishing these guidelines without delay.
“Both our city and the men and women who protect it have been denied this essential tool for far too long. We can’t allow justice to be delayed any longer. As soon as the city funds a body camera program, we need to be ready to implement it. That can only happen if St. Louis has appropriate guidelines in place for the use of body cameras.
“The St. Louis Board of Alderman must address the myriad legal, technological and safety issues related to body cameras right now. By establishing these policies now, we’ll ensure that our city can implement a truly transparent and accountable body camera program as soon as possible.”
Nasheed is calling on the Board of Alderman to establish guidelines for these specific issues related to body camera programs:
- When officers should be recording, and when they should stop recording to protect privacy.
- How to report camera malfunctions and record during such equipment failures.
- How and when body camera footage will be reviewed.
- How long the police department will be required to retain body camera footage and how it will be stored.
- How and under what circumstances the public will be able to obtain body camera footage.
- Whether or not members of the public need to be notified that they are being filmed.
- What the system would be for those failing to adhere to these policies.