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Body Worn Video Steering Group

National policing lead on firearms “throws his weight” behind body worn cameras

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Deputy Chief Constable (DCC) Simon Chesterman is the national policing lead on firearms and has reportedly “thrown his weight” behind the principle of body worn cameras.

Firearms

He explained in an interview with Police Oracle how the development of the technology in the previous few years has led to the widespread adoption of cameras used on the policing front line:

“Cameras are not a new phenomenon and have been around for a number of years” he began, “they have been valuable, for example, in areas such as domestic abuse and have the potential to significantly reduce cost within the criminal justice system.”

However, DCC Chesterman has also warned that it is crucial that examining footage from incidents is done sensitively and with an understanding of the psychological state of officers in the situation. Police Oracle reported that he “stressed that the psychology of how the human brain reacts in response to danger needs to be taken into account when the footage is examined”

Despite concerns regarding the scrutinising of evidence, DCC Chesterman revealed how body worn cameras have been received positively by both the public and the police:

“A recent poll has shown that 90 per cent of respondents believe that police officers should wear cameras and many front line officers I speak to would have no issue with wearing a camera as they have nothing to hide.

“The research shows that body worn cameras reduce complaints and the necessity to use force as they moderate the behaviour of the suspect and the wearer.”

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