posted at 18:50
Author Name: Jerome Cartillier
Obama to move on police body cameras after Ferguson unrest
The August death of 18-year-old Michael Brown in Missouri revived long-standing questions about how police, especially white officers, interact with African Americans. The president - who met with civil rights and law enforcement leaders amid ongoing protests over a grand jury decision not to charge the white police officer in the shooting - ruled out reducing federal sales of surplus military equipment to police forces. Instead the president said he would issue an executive order with new guidance for the controversial program, which sparked renewed debate after images during the first protests in Ferguson showed police perched on armored trucks aiming rifles at demonstrators. "We found that in many cases, these programs actually serve a very useful purpose," said White House spokesman Josh Earnest, citing the example of Boston police drawing on military-grade equipment after the bombings at the city's marathon in April 2013. Calls for police officers to wear micro-cameras fitted to uniforms have mounted since Brown was killed. Obama called on Congress to work with him to ensure police forces are "Adequately resourced for the training and the technology that can enhance trust between communities and police." Body cameras are already worn by police officers in some US cities, such as Laurel, Maryland. The US president also announced a task force aimed at improving relations between police and the communities they serve, tasked with presenting its recommendations within three months.

Posts Archive