Police officers in Brent start wearing body-worn cameras
- Credit: Archant
Brent has become the second borough in London where police officers wear body-worn cameras.
The Body Worn Video (BWV) is part of a large scale deployment that will see all 22,000 Met frontline officers across 32 boroughs using the equipment by next summer.
The rollout was launched in Lewisham last month and follows a successful trial, wide-ranging public consultation and academic evaluation.
It also coincides with a film which shows how useful a tool the cameras in recounting high pressure incidents.
Last November the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) awarded a three-year contract worth £3.4 million to Axon Public Safety UK, to supply the MPS with 22,000 cameras.
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Front line specialist roles, including overt firearms officers, will have cameras attached to their uniform which will not be permanently recording.
The public will know they are being recorded by the flashing red circle and frequent beeping noise of the camera while it is recording.
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In trials the cameras have shown that they can help bring about quicker justice for victims as the technology offers greater transparency for those in front of and behind the camera, especially during challenging and contentious interactions such as stop and search.
All footage recorded on BWV is subject to legal safeguards and guidance. The footage is automatically uploaded to secure servers once the device has been docked, and flagged for use as evidence at court or other proceedings.
They are automatically deleted within 31 days if not retained as evidence or for policing purposes.
Residents can ask to see the footage but must do so in writing to obtain it under freedom of information, data protection laws.
Chief Inspector Andy McNaughton said: “We are delighted to launch Body Worn Video in Brent today. It is gives us an excellent opportunity to provide greater support to the most vulnerable in the community.
“Video footage will help capture the best evidence, securing quicker convictions, protecting victims and freeing up officers time to be back out on patrol reassuring the community. We hope the use of BWV will continue to inspire confidence in the community in the service we provide.”