This Corrections1 How to Buy Body-Worn Cameras (BWCs) guide can serve as a starting point for your correctional agency's body-worn camera purchasing process. Please note, this is not an exhaustive list of all issues that should be considered when purchasing BWCs. Work with any necessary internal and external stakeholders involved with your agency to determine what you want to achieve by acquiring BWCs.
After-action reviews (AARs) are detailed internal examinations following significant events or critical incidents (e.g., protests, civil unrest demonstrations, police shootings, police ambushes). They serve to identify the positive practices and areas of improvement within an organization’s response with the goal of improving future responses. The 2020 civil unrest events in the United States prompted several cities and police departments to conduct AARs to evaluate law enforcement’s response.
The Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) Body-Worn Camera (BWC) Policy and Implementation Program (PIP) has awarded grants to several tribal communities across the United States from 2015 through 2022. Grantee departments have used the funds to purchase over 500 BWCs. This Infographic spotlights the experience of Gun Lake Tribe Public Safety Department, MI.
Many departments use body-worn camera (BWC) footage for administrative purposes, such as investigating community member complaints and officer use of force. BWC footage can also capture and measure important aspects of officers’ interactions with community members. This one-page resource provides just a few examples of the types of questions an agency can answer with BWC footage in this regard.
The introduction of body-worn camera (BWC) technology has given law enforcement agencies an opportunity to enhance officer safety through different methods. As the technology evolves, so do the ways in which BWC footage is used for training and tactical purposes focusing on officer safety. This resource highlights ways in which agencies have used BWCs to promote officer safety via tactical awareness, training, FTO-recruit feedback, and real-time decision-making.
Over the last few years, thousands of law enforcement agencies in the United States have adopted body-worn cameras (BWCs), and those agencies immediately had to deal with the tremendous amount of digital evidence generated by the technology. Digital evidence management (DEM) is the process by which an agency manages, stores, and transmits the data generated by BWCs and other devices (e.g., other types of cameras, cell phones). DEM is a critically important feature of a successful BWC program.
As more police agencies have adopted BWCs on their own initiative, and at least seven states have recently moved to mandate their use, BWCs are becoming a permanent fixture for the majority of police agencies. As BWCs continue to garner widespread support across varied segments of the public and of law enforcement, the benefits of this technology are becoming firmly established and agencies are demonstrating novel ways to use BWCs to improve policing.
Digital Evidence Management (DEM) encompasses a wide variety of devices, technologies, tools, and data, particularly as they relate to the criminal justice system (Goodison, Davis, and Jackson, 2015). This report is about body-worn cameras (BWCs) and the digital evidence (footage) created by the technology. The main purpose of the study is to understand and explain the key challenges faced by law enforcement agencies and prosecutor offices as they use BWCs routinely.
Since the inception of the BWCPIP program in 2015, CNA’s training and technical assistance (TTA) team has worked with hundreds of BWCPIP grantees. The CNA TTA team has worked closely with all types of agencies—large and small, urban, suburban, and rural. CNA has provided TTA to sheriffs’ departments, tribal law enforcement, university police, transportation authority police, school police departments, and park police. CNA has also assisted agencies in implementing BWC programs in county jails and with state correctional agencies.
Several different mount configurations are available for body-worn cameras (BWCs). These mounts can be used with a wide variety of uniforms to hold the camera to officers' or deputies' shirts, patrol vests, hats, or jackets. The red dots on the uniform below correspond to different locations you may choose to mount your BWCs, with benefits and limitations of each location detailed in the following pages.