Smile! Scotland Yard rolls out body-worn cameras to 22,000 police officers
PUBLISHED: 10:25 17 October 2016 | UPDATED: 10:49 17 October 2016
It is thought to be the largest rollout of body-worn cameras by police anywhere in the world
Officers at Met Police will be armed with body worn cameras from today.
More than 22,000 frontline officers will be issued with a BWV, (Body Worn Video) over the coming months.
Scotland Yard claims the move is thought to be the largest rollout of cameras by police anywhere in the world.
So far the use of cameras has helped speed-up court hearings.
Since the cameras were first introduced, there has been an increase in earlier guilty pleas from domestic abuse offenders who now know their actions have been recorded.
“What we do every day will be seen by the public - that has to be good!” commented commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe.
“Our experience of using cameras already shows that people are more likely to plead guilty when they know we have captured the incident on a camera. That then speeds up justice, puts offenders behind bars more quickly and most importantly protects potential victims.
“Video captures events in a way that can’t be represented on paper in the same detail, a picture paints a thousand words, and it has been shown the mere presence of this type of video can often defuse potentially violent situations without the need for force to be used.”
Following a trial last year, a £3.4million contract was given to Axon Public Safety Ltd to create 22,000 BWVs.
The cameras will not be permanently recording, but members of the public can access footage taken by police via a freedom of information request.