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Third police officer charged over watch house capsicum spray

By johnboy 2 May 2007 24

The ABC is is reporting that a *THIRD* police officer has been charged “over alleged assaults at the City Watch House involving capsicum spray”.

Nothing to see here?

UPDATED: The SMH has much more on this including the names of the officers. (thanks to DavidM)

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Third police officer charged over watch house capsicum spray
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farq 10:33 pm 03 May 07

FC: Pretty much, just like you see on those ‘world worst police chases’ etc. Just one that is attached to the cops’ belt (or hat).

Smack: Weight would be an issue, it would have to be a really nice, small and tough piece of equipment.

Yogie47: Resolution of DVD quality is not required for simple ‘his word against mine’ type complaints. Anything over 640×480 would be sufficient (the sound is more important, which can be encoded at high quality in real time I might add, my mp3 player already does this!). Also I think you underestimate the amount of near real time video compression you can achieve these days, especially if the unit has a dedicated mpeg compression chip (like the DVR I want to buy!).

Once recording have been uploaded to the central server, they can be compressed again using encoding formats that are too slow to be creared real-time (Like all the DivX videos you get over torrents).

I’m sure if I did some googleing on it, I could get some figures on space required, but at a lowish quality, I know you could fit at least half a shift in a portable device (If not right now, then in a year or two the hardware required would be available, i.e. large enough flash drives). If the cars where fitted with larger storage devices, then every time a cop rides in a patrol car, they sync their recorder.

I don’t think it’s a question of IF it could be done, the question is would the people, if given the option would want this?

Also would the AFPA support it, if not why not?

yogie47 8:49 pm 03 May 07

I’ve seen those recordings of retail and bank staff they are usually such a poor standard they are worthless. Having to record the movements and actions of all Police 24/7 would create an enormous amount of data. 1 hr of recording equals about 1 DVD. Do the math 8 DVD’s per cop, 200+ cops on shift per day, will get out of control pretty quick.

FC 2:37 pm 03 May 07

I know little about the case in question. Could you enlighten us with you knowledge then??

Regardless of my knowledge of the case, the point I am making is that assualt is assault and they wouldn’t be getting charged if they were acting in accordance with the AFP procedures.

On the topic of recordings, The US police have those cameras in their cars that recording everything when those cops are out and about – Does anyone know of any problems these have created? and/or is this the type of thing you are talking about farq?

farq 12:34 pm 03 May 07

Anyone who works at in retail already spend their entire shift under surveillance. They are only trusted with the till. Cops are trusted with people’s liberty! Not only are the cameras used in retail to catch staff nicking from the till, but managers also review the tapes to see if staff have been slacking off.

What I am suggesting would never be monitored in that way.

In terms of privacy, the idea is if the recording is not required to substantiate the facts of a matter (brought up by either the cop or the accused) then it is deleted, having never been seen by anyone. Water cooler type conversations would be recorded, but should in theory never be reviewed.

That’s a better deal than the people already working under surveillance in retail get.

It’s would be good if police recorded all their interactions with the public (even for small stuff like tickets), it means that it’s never a case of ‘his word against mine’. People can argue the point all they like, as long as the cop does his job professionally, the recording can only serve support their actions.

If police are selectively making recordings (outside a formal interview), I assume you would have trouble discovering if a recording exists, let alone getting access to it (unless it supports a charge, then they would use it as evidence).

But if you have a complaint against a cop for unprofessional conduct, a truly dishonest one would simply deny the existence of any recordings. With this idea, the cop was required to make and keep a recording, so a complaint can be checked by reviewing the recording for that incident.

Is this too much accountability to demand from a profession given this much authority?

I take the point of cost and weight, but with enough cash a really nice small bit of kit could be developed. The data could be uploaded to a central storage system, daily or more often so the device does not need hundreds of gigs for storage. The patrol cars could even be fitted out as a sort of roving base station for the up loads (and when the car is parked back at base, it uploads the data to the central server).

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