A select group of San Jose police officers are being outfitted with small, high tech camera equipment in a trial that will reportedly give them greater accountability for their actions and potential additional evidence in criminal cases.
According to the Silicon Valley Mercury News, the city of San Jose has 18 officers testing the devices, mounted on a headband above their ear. The gadgets include a small camera, about the size of a blue tooth ear piece, and a computer device worn around the waist. Officers are told to turn on the equipment before each civilian contact.
After the city has undergone stiff criticism lately for possibly profiling or judging racial groups disparagingly, some are seeing the new cameras as a way to keep the officers accountable for their own actions. The department, however, sees the new tools as simply a way to provide additional evidence in criminal cases.
Depending on the outcome, the cameras could be used by the entire force at some point, costing an estimated $2888 per officer in the first year. Only time will tell how the cameras will affect police relations but as an evidence gathering tool it could bring justice to criminal cases.
Prosecutors and police consider a lot of evidence before criminal charges are brought against a suspect. A camera recording the arrest would be a good tool for all parties, so that what happened would be less of a he said/she said situation.
In criminal cases, when it’s your word against the word of an arresting officer, your hopes may be low. It’s understandable to be frustrated and doubtful about your chances of a good outcome.
This kind of technology could actually be a significant help to the accused, when police lie or exaggerate the circumstances of the arrest. If there is video evidence of you behaving reasonably and legally, you can significantly help your chances in criminal court.
Whether you are facing drug charges, DUI charges, or something more serious, I can assist you in examining all of the evidence they have against you and helping to develop the best possible defense strategy.