Issue: Gun Violence
The legislation could impact state court operations.
No formal position.
On 2/26/15, Representative Al Green, (D-TX) introduced the Camera Accountability Maintenance and Transparency in Policing Act of 2015 (H.R. 1124) to establish a grant program providing for the acquisition, operation, and maintenance of body-worn cameras for law enforcement officers. The funded body camera programs would be required to:
The measure would require grants to be awarded first to qualifying local governments with fewer than 100,000 residents, with any remaining funds awarded to other applicants on a pro rata basis. Further, H.R.1124 would establish a task force within DOJ to: (1) provide recommendations on community policing, (2) study the impact that citizen review boards could have on investigating cases of alleged police misconduct, and (3) conduct a survey to determine best practices and the effectiveness of the body camera requirement policy.
On 3/26/15, Senator Brian Schatz (D-HI) and Representative Corrine Brown (D-FL) introduced the Police CAMERA Act (S. 877) to establish a pilot grant program to assist state and local law enforcement agencies in purchasing body-worn cameras for law enforcement officers in order to deter excessive force, improve accountability and transparency of use of force by law enforcement officers, assist in responding to complaints against officers, and improve evidence collection. Grantees would be required to:
The measure would allow data collected to be used only in internal and external investigations of misconduct by a law enforcement agency or officer, if there is reasonable suspicion that a recording contains evidence of a crime, or for limited training purposes. Grantees would be prohibited from transferring any collected data to another law enforcement or intelligence agency, except for investigations of crimes and civil rights violations.
On 7/29/15, Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) introduced the Safer Officers and Safer Citizens Act of 2015 (S. 1897) to help keep law enforcement officers and communities safer by making grants to purchase body worn cameras for use by state, local, and tribal law enforcement officers. S. 1897 would require the Bureau of Justice Assistance to give preference to grant applications from jurisdictions that: (1) have comprehensive policies and procedures related to implementation of a body-worn camera program, (2) have high percentages of officers without access to body-worn cameras, (3) have violent crime rates above the national average, and (4) agree to submit metrics on the use of body-worn cameras.
There has been no action to-date on these bills.