Possible New Md. Regulations on Police Body Cam Video - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Possible New Md. Regulations on Police Body Cam Video

Posted: Updated:
Sunglass-mounted body camera worn by a Fruitland police officer. (Photo: WBOC) Sunglass-mounted body camera worn by a Fruitland police officer. (Photo: WBOC)

WICOMICO COUNTY, Md.- A commission put together by Gov. Larry Hogan is urging the Maryland General Assembly to take a look at possible new regulations for the release of police body camera video to the public.

The Commission Regarding the Implementation and Use of Body Cameras by Law Enforcement Officers released a report which said the General Assembly should consider changes to the Maryland Public Information Act that would restrict the release of police body cam video that depicts things like domestic violence or victims of violent crimes.

In Wicomico County, the Fruitland Police Department is in its second year of body camera use by its police officers.  Officers in Fruitland tell WBOC wearing the body cameras has become the norm and wearing the technology has already paid off in many situations.

"We've been able to dispel a few complaints with them.  We don't get a lot of complaints anyway but a few that we've had, a couple people have left upon finding out the whole thing was recorded on body camera," said Lt. Brian Swafford.

Swafford said that in Fruitland there have no been many public information act requests made for body cam video, but even before any new possible regulations, there are already instances in which video cannot be released.

"There might be bystanders uninvolved in the call that were actually recorded on video.  There could be juveniles and there could be other sensitive things that we just can't edit out so it has to be there," Swafford said Wednesday.

Swafford added that none of the officers in Fruitland have had any complaints about the body cameras and enjoy wearing them because it allows the officers to prove they are doing their jobs correctly.

When it comes to the new possible rules and regulations regarding the release of body camera footage, the commission believes the restrictions would help protect the privacy of people depicted in the videos.  Limiting the access of those videos to the public, including the media, by altering Maryland's PIA. However, some WBOC viewers believe new restrictions would go to far.

"I prefer also to watch those videos simply because I do think there are checks and balances in our government and we need those checks and balances," said Erika Ewing of Salisbury.

The debate will be left up to Maryland's lawmakers when the General Assembly is back in session beginning in mid-January.

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Delaware State Fair Kicks Off Under Hot Temperatures

    Delaware State Fair Kicks Off Under Hot Temperatures

    Saturday, July 22 2017 11:07 AM EDT2017-07-22 15:07:23 GMT
    Saturday, July 22 2017 11:07 AM EDT2017-07-22 15:07:23 GMT
    HARRINGTON, Del. -- The Delaware State Fair kicked off on Thursday at the fairgrounds near Harrington as brutal temperatures and sunlight bared down on early visitors in the afternoon and early evening.The fair runs through July 29. It features a numberMore
    HARRINGTON, Del. -- The Delaware State Fair kicked off on Thursday at the fairgrounds near Harrington as brutal temperatures and sunlight bared down on early visitors in the afternoon and early evening.The fair runs through July 29. It features a numberMore
  • Main St. Plaza to Receive Drastic Makeover

    Main St. Plaza to Receive Drastic Makeover

    07/22/2017 08:18:00 -04:002017-07-22 12:18:00 GMT
    Saturday, July 22 2017 8:18 AM EDT2017-07-22 12:18:30 GMT
    The Main St. Plaza is set to receive a drastic new look in October of 2018. The Plaza will be converted into a regular street with two sidewalks and asphalt down the middle.More
    The Main St. Plaza is set to receive a drastic new look in October of 2018. The Plaza will be converted into a regular street with two sidewalks and asphalt down the middle.More
  • Cambridge Welcomes Home Gloria Richardson Dandridge

    Cambridge Welcomes Home Gloria Richardson Dandridge

    07/21/2017 22:16:00 -04:002017-07-22 02:16:00 GMT
    Friday, July 21 2017 10:27 PM EDT2017-07-22 02:27:21 GMT
    Gloria Richardson Dandridge - the woman who led the Cambridge Civil Rights Movement - finally came back home.More
    Gloria Richardson Dandridge - the woman who led the Cambridge Civil Rights Movement - finally came back home.More
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Delaware Woman Arrested for Dorchester County Stabbing

    Delaware Woman Arrested for Dorchester County Stabbing

    07/20/2017 15:30:00 -04:002017-07-20 19:30:00 GMT
    Thursday, July 20 2017 3:30 PM EDT2017-07-20 19:30:50 GMT
    (Photo: MGN)(Photo: MGN)
    A Delaware woman has been arrested in connection with a Dorchester County stabbing, according to Maryland State Police.More
    A Delaware woman has been arrested in connection with a Dorchester County stabbing, according to Maryland State Police.More
  • Cambridge Welcomes Home Gloria Richardson Dandridge

    Cambridge Welcomes Home Gloria Richardson Dandridge

    07/21/2017 22:16:00 -04:002017-07-22 02:16:00 GMT
    Friday, July 21 2017 10:27 PM EDT2017-07-22 02:27:21 GMT
    Gloria Richardson Dandridge - the woman who led the Cambridge Civil Rights Movement - finally came back home.More
    Gloria Richardson Dandridge - the woman who led the Cambridge Civil Rights Movement - finally came back home.More
  • Police Looking for Man Involved in Assault in Milford

    Police Looking for Man Involved in Assault in Milford

    Friday, July 21 2017 3:08 PM EDT2017-07-21 19:08:10 GMT
    Friday, July 21 2017 3:08 PM EDT2017-07-21 19:08:10 GMT
    A Dover woman was arrested after providing officers with a fake name.A Dover woman was arrested after providing officers with a fake name.
    MILFORD, De.-- The Milford Police Department is turning to the public to ask for assistance in locating a man involved in an assault. A warrant is out for Huber Velasquez-Rodriguez of Milford. Police say the 36-year-old was involved in a domestic reMore
    MILFORD, De.-- The Milford Police Department is turning to the public to ask for assistance in locating a man involved in an assault. A warrant is out for Huber Velasquez-Rodriguez of Milford. Police say the 36-year-old was involved in a domestic reMore
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2017 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices