Monday, November 16, 2015

The Feds Want Bodycams On Local Police EXCEPT When They're Working On One Of Their Teams

The discrepancy is a headache for U.S. Marshals, who now aren’t allowed to have officers wearing body cameras on their task forces
The Justice Department is publicly urging local police departments to adopt body cameras, saying they are an important tool to improve transparency and trust between officers and citizens.
But privately, the department is telling some of its agents they cannot work with officers using such cameras as part of joint task forces, according to people familiar with the discussions.
The reason: The federal government hasn’t yet adopted guidelines on how and when to use body cameras, rules that would be important to determining how any footage could be used in court, released publicly, or stored by law-enforcement agencies.
The contradiction reveals the potential challenges for federal agencies that work closely with local police, such as the U.S. Marshals. And it underscores how slow the Obama administration has been to craft its own rules on cameras, even as it pushes local authorities to quickly adopt them in the wake of high-profile police shootings.
At a meeting of Marshals supervisors several weeks ago in Colorado, Assistant Director Derrick Driscoll announced that the agency wouldn’t allow any local law-enforcement officers wearing body cameras to serve on Marshals task forces, according to several people who attended the meeting.
The Marshals Service, an agency within the Justice Department, runs scores of task forces around the country, teaming up with local police primarily to hunt fugitives and violent criminals.
Read the rest of the story HERE.

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