Body Cameras Coming for Lake Charles Police Department
As reported by KPLC, Lake Charles police officers may soon be wearing body cameras while on duty.
Deputy Chief Mike Krauss told Erika Ferrando the cameras will allow the department to better document their dealings with the public. While the department currently has dash cams in patrol units, these cameras obviously only have a limited range. Body cams would allow officers to accurately capture events as they are happening on the move.
Kraus said, "we want to be able to say one of two things, our man was wrong and we're going to hold this accountable, or our man was right and we're standing behind him." -- KPLCTV.com
Kraus said the body cams also won't replace dash cams in the cars.
On one level, this seems like a great idea -- no more he said/she said. Videos will be incredibly helpful in chaotic or violent situations. They might even keep some people from going too far, since they know they're on camera.
But there's always the dark side of that idea. Camera technology like that could also be used to tell stories that didn't necessarily happen. Video can be edited, manipulated and arranged to tell any number of stories. I know -- I work with video all the time. Now, I am in no way saying that this would happen in the Lake Charles police department. But it is a very valid possibility.
Like anything in the public realm, it's ... complicated. There's good and bad. But it's worth discussing and looking at closely. What do you think?