Money Approved for Cop Car Cameras

Thursday, December 6, 2012
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The Santa Barbara City Council has authorized the expenditure of up to $208,000 to install video cameras in city cop cars. The absence of such cameras came to light in lengthy articles written by freelance reporter Peter Lance two years ago excoriating the department for alleged unethical practices pertaining to drunk driving enforcement. The County Grand Jury subsequently issued a report questioning why the city cop cars were without cameras. At the same meeting, city councilmembers were given a duck-and-cover drill in how to respond in the event an armed assailant opened fire at them while on the dais. Because the dais itself has a bulletproof facade, councilmembers were instructed to crouch under the dais for cover.


Independent Discussion Guidelines

The question is not whether any agency eventually gets video cameras, but whether they are operational at the time of whatever incident is of concern. Police agencies over the years have gone from having video to not having them to coming back to have them, and they are of uneven mind about such things. As a constitutional defense attorney, I seek out the video on all arrests of clients, and there is ALWAYS a wide divergence between what the cop said in his report happened and what you see in the video, and the cops' versions are ALWAYS more anti-suspect than the truth revealed on the video. Because of that, because truth in police report writing is not an ascendant value, very often, in a critical matter, the video just happened not to be working at the time, or it was aimed in the wrong direction, or something. Your community is especially suspect when it comes to DUI arrests and prosecutions, as I found out this week when I appeared to protect a witness from a phony/baloney contempt charge, the sole motivation for which was to chill the speech of the witness who was accurately revealing the scientific fraud about breath testing. You need to get your "justice" system under control, because it is gravely out of whack compared to that I have have seen elsewhere - many elsewheres. The video program might help, if you get DAs who are honest and judges who are neutral. That's the big "IF."

capmotion (anonymous profile)
December 6, 2012 at 9:50 a.m. (Suggest removal)

More commentary from one of those "paid legal experts" hired to keep the guilty (with money) from being held accountable. Just love those lawyers that claim the only neutral judge is the one that rules in their favor.

Must have missed the ethics class in law school.

Validated (anonymous profile)
December 6, 2012 at 10:07 a.m. (Suggest removal)

@Validated: Is anyone who hires a defense attorney guilty in your world view. Apparently you believe anyone charged with anything should just roll over? Read the constitution lately? Understand the actual meaning of the word "ethics"? There's plenty of evidence indicated that our local "justice" system is ethically challenged, not so much the defense side.

JohnLocke (anonymous profile)
December 6, 2012 at 10:31 a.m. (Suggest removal)

The good 10% of lawyers refer to the other 90% as "bottom feeders". That should tell you something.
It doesn't take much brains to pass the BAR exam, so says a lawyer friend who's passed it in 3 different states.

Cops will be held more accountable with the cameras. It's a good idea.

Lawyers should be recorded because they lie alot.

khiggler (anonymous profile)
December 6, 2012 at 12:57 p.m. (Suggest removal)

It's the 99% of bad lawyers who give the 1% a bad name.

The scowl on capmotion's face probably is enough to win half his cases.

SezMe (anonymous profile)
December 7, 2012 at 3:43 a.m. (Suggest removal)

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