PBA President calls it “very bad news for New Yorkers who want more police-community engagement and less government surveillance.”
Today, at the request of the U.S. District Court judge overseeing the case, the Federal Monitor overseeing the settlement in the stop, question and frisk lawsuits against the City of New York submitted a proposal for a court-ordered pilot program. The program requires police officers to document Level 1 and Level 2 street encounters (i.e., encounters not rising to the level of a Level 3 "reasonable suspicion" stop) using body-worn cameras. The proposal must be approved by that same judge before going into effect. See a copy of the Monitor's proposal.
PBA President Patrick J. Lynch said:
"The proposed pilot is very bad news for New Yorkers who want more police-community engagement and less government surveillance. It would require police officers to switch on their body-cameras almost every time they speak to a member of the public, even when they have zero suspicion that criminal activity is afoot. Even worse, they would have a third-party 'observer' tagging along for the duration of the pilot program. The results will be a colossal increase in police officers' administrative workload, a drain on NYPD resources and the production of countless of hours of government-controlled video footage of individuals who are not criminal suspects. New Yorkers who want their cops to be real members of the community — not automated surveillance drones — need to speak out against this misguided and wasteful proposal."