City delegate seeks to place video cameras on police

ANNAPOLIS. Md. - A Baltimore City lawmaker is sponsoring legislation authorizing video cameras to be placed on the uniforms, glasses or person of all law enforcement officers.

Del. Frank Conaway Jr. is pushing for the passage of his police camera enforcement bill, which will receive a hearing at 1 p.m. Tuesday in the House Judiciary Committee
Conaway said the goal of the bill is to cut down on false claims of police brutality. He adds false claims result in the "single most expensive fiscal note incurred by the City of Baltimore."

The bill will also ensure that those who "are sworn to 'protect and serve' the interests of everyday citizens, are doing just that," Conaway said.

"When you look at programs like the one implemented in Rialto, California, where these camera devices were placed on officer's uniforms and they witnessed the number of citizen complaints against officers go down 88 percent, and more importantly witnessing a 59 percent reduction in the use of unnecessary force. I believe it's something that is long overdue in the State of Maryland," said Conaway, who serves on the House Judiciary Committee, in a statement.

Conaway said the police camera requirement bill is one of several public safety measures introduced this session him. Conaway also favors a bill making it illegal for failing to obey a 911 operator. He is also sponsoring a bill that would make a person immune from prosecution while reasonably protecting their property against intruders.

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