The New York Police Department (NYPD) has a notable history with controversy. It is now being alleged that some officers in the NYPD have found a way to get around the accountability that wearing body cameras is supposed to provide.
What We Know:
- According to ABC News, an investigative report by New York City’s Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB), published last month that some officers had been accused of forming a system of verbal and non-verbal cues to warn each other of when their body camera devices are live, thus signaling them to be on their best behavior.
- The findings of the probe into alleged misconduct by the NYPD found that officers routinely used code words or phrases. Some of which include “I’m hot,” “I went to Hollywood,” and “We’re live” were used to signal at fellow officers.
- In 2014, the department began using the cameras after a federal judge ruled that its “stop-and-frisk” policies, championed by then-Mayor Mike Bloomberg, were blatantly unconstitutional. They were also used as a form of “indirect racial profiling” against Black and Brown communities.
- Nearly 3.5 million videos have been recorded in the years since over 36,000 officers began to be outfitted with the tiny palm-sized recording devices. The sole purpose is to deter police misconduct, while also helping the CCRD respond to the thousands of complaints it investigates each year.
In addition to this recent revelation, the CCRD have also identified incidents where officers refused to comply with NYPD policy regarding when body cams are being activated. More often than not, officers would either stall and waited longer than was appropriate to switch them on, turn them off way too early, or not even turn them on to begin with.