Body Worn Video Camera Experiment

Report
West Midlands Police
Serving our communities,
protecting them from harm
Body Worn Video Camera
Experiment
Rialto P.D. California
T/Insp 3908 Darren Henstock
Serving our communities, protecting them from harm
The problem
Serving our communities,
protecting them from harm
• The public’s perception of police use of force continues
to be a problem.
• “Too many” incidents in which officers resort to use of
force.
•Misinterpretation of contact or aggressive behaviour?
•“High number” of citizen complaints against police
officers.
•True officer misbehaviour or malicious complaints?
The Challenges
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protecting them from harm
• Reducing use of force and complaints without changing
the frequency and nature of contact with the public
• Requires third-party systematic observation that would
scientifically measure both the implementation and the
outcome of the practice
• Cost effectiveness
• Leadership – can we implement this research
Cameras in Police Use
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protecting them from harm
•
61% of police departments used video cameras in patrol cars in
2007. (U.S. Department of Justice 2010)
•
Cameras are likely to:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Improve accountability
Reduce complaints of police misconduct
Save thousands of dollars in court costs
Lower overtime costs for investigations and court appearances
Improve ability to collect evidence for trial
Increase professionalism by forcing officers to give more attention
to following agency rules.
(International Association of Police Chiefs, 2004)
Evidence on Cameras
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protecting them from harm
• Systematic review on CCTV – 44 studies show 16%
reduction in crime compared to control conditions, but half
accountable to car theft, not violent crime (Welsh and
Farrington 2009).
• Systematic review on cameras on roads – 35 studies
show 44% reduction in fatal accidents (Wilson et al. 2010).
• BWV – no formal evaluation.
Research Questions
Serving our communities,
protecting them from harm
• Will wearing body-worn video cameras reduce the
number of complaints against officers compared to the
control group?
• Will wearing body-worn video cameras reduce the
number (instances) of use of force compared to the
control group?
Research Design
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protecting them from harm
• Random assignment of all front-line officers to shifts with
or without cameras
• Taser Inc. HD cameras recording all police-public
interactions for 12 months.
• Went live 13th February 2012 after two weeks of Phase 1.
Results - complaints
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Results – Use of force
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Summary
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protecting them from harm
• Reduction in use of force incidents from 61 to 25.
• Of the 25 use of force incidents, 17 were in control group
and 8 in the experiment.
• Of the 8 use of force incidents on the experiment days, all
8 were recorded on video
• Reduction in complaints from 24 to 3.
• Contacts increased from the previous years – no
backfiring effect.
• Survey of all officers before and during RCT shows no
significant changes in officers’ self-legitimacy
Further work
Serving our communities,
protecting them from harm
• Randomised Control Trial in the West Midlands supported
by Cambridge University in order to replicate Rialto
project.
• Full Rialto presentation and wider implications can be
found at:
http://www.crim.cam.ac.uk/events/conferences/ebp/2013/slides/effects_of_body_worn
_tony_farrar.pptx

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