Yesterday, a US judge ruled that “stop-and-frisk” laws violated the rights of minorities in New York City. In her recommendations accompanying the ruling, Judge Shira Scheindlin ordered the NYPD to test wearable cameras in five precincts where the controversial search tactic was used. But a lot of people are wondering what effect if any the cameras will have on police behaviour.
The WSJ reports that under the ruling “hundreds” of police would wear cameras that would they would activate with a button during searches and other incidents. The goal is to have an objective record of these interactions. Evidence from experiments in other parts of the country suggest cameras encourage police to behave better. The cameras also protect police from fraudulent reports of abuse.
The cameras have their opponents, including Mayor Mike Bloomberg. Detractors say that because the cameras will really only record incomplete records they won’t be effective. They also say the cameras create and enforcement nightmare.
What do you guys think? Should the police have to wear cameras or is it all a waste of time? [WSJ]