Body Worn Video Steering Group

Body Worn Video and the National Institute for Justice

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The National Institute for Justice currently has two ongoing funded research programs assessing how video integration into policing strategies can have an effect on criminal justice outcomes. The total amount awarded comes in at just over $1.5 million, distributed to two entities and focused specifically on body worn video.


Firstly, in 2013, NIJ funded CNA Corporation to examine the impact of body-worn cameras in the Las Vegas Metro Police Department. Researchers study the implementation of body-worn cameras in the department, including adherence to department policy and the effect of sergeants on patrol officers’ use of body-worn cameras.

Researchers also will study the use of body worn video cameras by 400 officers in the field to learn about the effect of body-worn cameras in police-citizen encounters, including measures of use of force.

Finally, the researchers will conduct a cost-benefit analysis to estimate the time officers spend in court or on suspension as a result of negative interactions with citizens.

Also, ‘Testing and Evaluating Body-Worn Video Technology in the Los Angeles Police Department’ was awarded funds.

In 2014, NIJ funded the Los Angeles Police Foundation to conduct an evaluation of body-worn video technology in the Los Angeles Police Department. Researchers will study how body-worn video technology is used in the field and its impact on police-citizen behaviour and on crime.

The study will address a number of questions that fall into five general categories:

• Using body-worn video technology
• Privacy concerns
• Police legitimacy and changes in police services
• Crime reduction
• Use of advanced analytics

Among the sources of data that researchers will use are information on citizen complaints, use of force, and crime. They also will conduct interviews and surveys with officers and interviews with citizens.

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