Four years ago, Winnipeg Police, Canada, spent $1 million on a Body Worn Video (BWV) programme equipping 800 Police Officers with an unknown company’s “RS3-SX” cameras. The cameras were not considered optimum at that time and the trial failed.
Similar trials with other cameras have been conducted in police departments all across North America in the past few years, with largely the same outcome. Berthiaume, the Police Chief for Amhertsburg Police said of one trial “There were too many hardware issues with the first cameras – so many quality control issues. They failed almost immediately” leaving Canadian Police without BWV.
“That’s about to change” states one Canadian Newspaper, as Amhertsburg Police have since finished testing Reveal Media’s RS3-SX body worn camera with positive results. The Newspaper claimed the Police have found cameras to “improve the quality of evidence in prosecutions, reduce violent confrontations, speed up court cases and cut down on the number of citizen complaints against police.”
“Body cameras would also protect police from false accusations, while ensuring officers do not exceed their authority.”
The recent fatal shooting of Sammy Yatim in Toronto has highlighted the value of BWV, and will perhaps drive other large Canadian Cities to begin using cameras.