Bill Scott Testimony in Support of NV Bodycam Bill: “My Son Erik Might Be Alive Today…” (Video)

“My eldest son, Erik Scott, might be alive today if Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department officers had been required to wear body cameras in the summer of 2010, when Erik was shot to death.”

– William B. Scott

On March 31, 2015, the Nevada State Assembly’s Government Affairs Committee held a hearing on Nevada State Assembly Bill AB403, which would require all Nevada police to wear body cameras. Testimony was given by various witnesses, both for and against, the proposed bill. Among those speaking in support of mandating bodycams was Bill Scott, whose son Erik Scott was gunned down by three members of the LVMPD outside a Summerlin, NV Costco, back in 2010.

Body CameraOne of the most contentious issues relating to that day has always been the lack of a video showing what exactly happened. Further, the incredibly dubious claim that the one camera which would have provided that video was malfunctioning at the time, has done nothing but create questions and inspire doubt. Although that controversy itself, along with the already mounting examples of body worn or dash mounted cameras similarly “malfunctioning” or simply being shut off by cops, shows why bodycams and dashcams aren’t the end all-solution to police abuses, they certainly could go a long way toward curtailing them, as Bill rightly states in his testimony. This would be especially true, if they were accompanied with real consequences for police officers that tamper with or turn off those cameras.

As has been demonstrated many times, knowing they are on camera and that there will be evidence of their crimes has often worked very effectively as a deterrent to police abuses. Even when cops aren’t wise enough to stay on good behavior because they know they are being filmed, cameras have often yielded the proof necessary to hold them accountable for their actions. Access and control of that evidence is still a huge issue that necessitates that we should still carry our own cameras and film the police every time we or someone else is stopped by the police, however having another camera recording all the time is obviously a step in the right direction.

Interestingly, the almost singular excuse used to oppose bodycams by those speaking against them (which consisted almost exclusively of police employees) was the expense involved in buying them and storing the footage. That’s actually kind of understandable, since the cops obviously don’t want to just come right out and say they don’t want anybody to see all the bad shit they do all day or especially not to have irrefutable evidence, when those things cross the line into prosecutable acts. The problem with that line of reasoning is that all of the many lawsuits being paid out for the bad conduct of police would more than easily pay for the added expense associated with requiring body cameras.

CBN-network-bannerIn Las Vegas, the citizens eventually paid about $2,000,000 total for the settlements to the family of Stanley Gibson, after he was murdered by Jesus Arevalo (who is also receiving between $23,000 and $28,000 every year from those taxpayers, as a de facto reward for that murder). That alone would put a huge dent in the cost required to outfit cops within the LVMPD with bodycams. So, the deterrence for murders by Nevada police that wearing bodycams would represent, would more than likely actually save money by eliminating the need to constantly pay those settlements to the families of their victims, as well as the associated increases in the premiums (from $1.3 million in 2012 to $6.9 in 2013 at the LVMPD) for the liability insurance that Nevada police departments have against such settlements.

Bill opens his half-hour long testimony (video embedded below) with these statements:

My eldest son, Erik Scott, might be alive today, if Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Dept. officers had been required to wear body cameras in the summer of 2010, when Erik was shot to death. Why? Because body-worn cameras are a powerful deterrent to the use of deadly force. They literally are “unimpeachable  witnesses.”

 

Officer William Mosher—who panicked and shot my son as Erik and his girlfriend calmly walked out of Costco-Summerlin—had already killed one man, in his first five years on the Las Vegas Metro force. That shooting was ruled “justified.” With no video evidence or civilian witnesses, inquest jurors had no alternative but to accept the accounts of on-scene police officers, even though they were highly suspect.

 

If he’d been wearing a bodycam on July 10, 2010, Mosher might not have fired at Erik. Having narrowly escaped criminal charges before, Mosher might have asked himself—as he hovered near the door of Costco, shaking like the proverbial leaf, according to witnesses:  “If I shoot and kill again, will I be fired? Will criminal charges be filed against me?” With his and dozens of other cops’ body cameras documenting every move, there would be no escaping the truth this time.

 

Body cameras on Mosher, Thomas Mendiola and Joshua Stark (the three shooters, who fired seven rounds into Erik, including five in his back) might have motivated the officers to opt for a much different, life-saving tactic: Follow Erik into the parking lot, de-escalate the situation by calmly talking to him, and check his legal concealed-carry permit. Everybody would have gone home safely…and Erik Scott would be alive and well today.

A full transcript of his entire testimony can be found at his website: williambscott.com

Bill’s book “the Permit,” a fictionalized account of Erik Scott’s murder, can be purchased via his personal website.

A related article Bill recently wrote for Politico.com about bodycams and how they may have affected not just Erik’s encounter with the LVMPD, but also how they potentially would have kept Michael Slager from murdering Walter Scott in North Charleston, South Carolina can be read here.

The unedited video of the full Nevada State Assembly’s Government Affairs Committee hearing on Nevada State Assembly Bill AB403 can be viewed here.

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About Kelly W. Patterson

a lifelong resident of Las Vegas, who’s been very active in local grassroots activism, as well as on a national level during his extensive travels. He’s also the founder/main contributor of Nevada Cop Block, served as editor/contributor at CopBlock.org and designed the Official Cop Block Press Passes.
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50 Responses to “Bill Scott Testimony in Support of NV Bodycam Bill: “My Son Erik Might Be Alive Today…” (Video)”

  1. steve618 April 20, 2015 at 12:00 pm #

    Very powerful testimony. He has more faith in the system than I do. Let’s hope he’s right that the tide can be turned.

  2. Common Sense April 20, 2015 at 1:58 pm #

    Its the greatest invasion of privacy in history, and the public screamed for it.

    Just wait, until the defense attorney subpoena’s the footage for a divorce or custody case, or CPS to see just how many dirty dishes there are or how much food was in the fridge. I’m quite sure the police will freely allow other governmental agencies to view whatever footage they wish. Oh look, walking up, the police will record every license plate in the driveway, you know, just for future review. How about landlords who suddenly file eviction paperwork when they discover proof their tenants have a dog. Looks like someone has lots of beer bottles, time to call an employer – “click play” if you don’t mind and watch the show.

    Remember, the overwhelming majority of police encounters involve no physical interaction, but now, its on record, there will be no plea agreements. And sorry, officer discretion is gone as well. “You gave that motorist a break, but not that one.” The public were upset in Florida over pole cameras, but yet now you want camera in your homes and your schools.

    And remember, the burden is “objectively reasonable” – but not the “public’s” reason, its what’s in the mind of the officer, without hindsight at the time of the application of force. The police lack the ability to hit stop, remind, and watch an incident again and again, and proclaim, we should have done this, rather than that. I would bet there will be a debate within the insurance carriers (risk management) on whether or not they want officers to wear them. In one breath they can say, “see, it exonerated our client” and the other “oh shit, you see that head come apart?! Get them a check and seal the tape, we don’t want a jury of trailer trash watching this.” Or even this, an officer, after having a particular funny encounter with someone, they themselves file a FOIA request and then upload the interactions. After all, its public record and they are a citizen. If Wikileaks can post the “private” emails of Sony executives, then “Drunk Grandma” passed out in her own vomit in her kitchen should be a hit.

    Perhaps incidents of misconduct will drop, then again,
    the same argument was made when dash cams came out and the footage in fact has exonerated officers more than it has led to their terminations, suspensions and indictments. The next step is facial recognition software, all inside a body camera. Naturally, some cops will be
    termed for turning them off, others charged in what are clearly
    violations of law. The underlying theme that this will cost the public
    it’s privacy.

    Some here all commented on “1984” – well its here, and you all asked for it.

    • Sikko April 20, 2015 at 2:58 pm #

      The cognative dissonance that some people on this site must suffer through on a daily basis from supporting mandates for more cameras has to be astoundingly difficult to deal with. On the one hand they argue how powerful a deterrent they are, but on the other argue how police are trained to escalate and intimidate and harass to the point that their actions are ingrained. They argue how effective cameras are, but complain about Kelly Thomas. They call for more people with cameras, and complain about Eric Garner. Then they complain about police being revenue generators, then call for police to outlay more funds. It reminds me greatly of the anti-gun crowd, just one more law and everything will be hunky dory. This despite the obvious, that humans will behave as they are wont to do, camera or no camera, law or no law.

      • keepitreal April 20, 2015 at 3:02 pm #

        What were the complaints associated with cameras for Kelly Thomas and Eric Garner?

        • Sikko April 20, 2015 at 3:28 pm #

          It wasn’t a complaint about cameras being there. The complaints have been that the footage those cameras provided were ignored. Those complaints came, and continue, and are usually accompanied by proclamations that the camera doesn’t lie, but miss the obvious fact that those cameras are incapable of telling the whole story.

          • keepitreal April 20, 2015 at 6:35 pm #

            Shit, Eric Garner is a simple one to explain, to me. He chose to argue with the cop right there on the street corner. And he shouldn’t have. Submit to the arrest, fight it out in court. Then sue, chances are, on a small case like this, he’d have gotten a nuisance payout of 5 or 10G. Beats dying.

          • Sikko April 20, 2015 at 6:45 pm #

            Oh, I’d agree. I’m not even saying that the complaints are invalid. I simply find it mind boggling that there are still continual calls for more cameras and more cameras, despite the overabundance of evidence to illustrate that the desired effect of more cameras isn’t the effect that is desired or expected.

          • g2reason April 23, 2015 at 12:06 pm #

            Yep, simple.
            Eric Garner was alive walking around happily violating a tax code.
            5 or 6 Police jumped on his back while trying to arrest him.
            And he died from compression of the chest in a prone position (put another way, lots of cops where on crushing him against the ground)

          • g2reason April 23, 2015 at 12:01 pm #

            True the system is rigged.
            Prosecutors need cops, and judges are former prosecutors.
            The video may not get a conviction, but because people can see the video, thy are starting to realize what a sham this system is.
            Every time jack and Jill watch a video of some cop smashing a citizens camera, and the PD investigation says the officer did nothing wrong – jack and Jill wake up a little.
            Little by little, video by video – the tide is turning.

    • t April 20, 2015 at 4:39 pm #

      It’s freedom dying with a whimper….at the idiots request.

      They just don’t get it that they are basically being played as the fool.

      As for Eric Scott. The only thing the camera would have done was shown his son dying because of bad life choices.

      • g2reason April 20, 2015 at 10:11 pm #

        That’s the sound of freedom for police to do whatever they want without accountability dying.
        RIP

        • t April 21, 2015 at 6:19 am #

          g:
          Small minded thinking by one who cares not about freedom. That’s is you.

          G= freedom fail.

          • g2reason April 21, 2015 at 9:58 pm #

            Cameras on cops don’t threaten my life or liberty.
            Cops that think they can do whatever they want, are a clear and present danger to both.

          • t April 23, 2015 at 10:33 am #

            g2:
            As the info YF added above from the ACLU….and the article from the goof DEO about complaint on officers show….they differ with your opinion.

    • g2reason April 20, 2015 at 10:08 pm #

      Not to concerned about my privacy if the cops are walking up my driveway. Anyone can see the cars in my driveway. If I let the cops in, I assume anything they see is reported.
      At least a camera will be an actual record of what happens, in the past it was just the cops report.

      That was a nice try, but the cameras are coming – and after a few more “malfunction” cases, they will be made tamper proof.

      • Common Sense April 21, 2015 at 9:20 am #

        I would certainly agree. But remember, the cop knows he’s recorded. naturally nation-wide, cams will catch some, but in the end, who’s going to be prosecuted more? The public or the police? The police will become nothing but robots, recording everything you do and say. Always remember, video has exonerated more cops than they’ve convicted.

        Just wait til the NSA starts to snatch up the data, you know, for the NDAA national security and all.

        • t April 21, 2015 at 11:46 am #

          CS:
          They just don’t get it.
          He thinks it’s just gonna catch cops. Hardly
          We’ve been recording ourselves for decades.
          He doesn’t understand that all of this is a potential gold mine of info for the police.
          @Shawn was bitching about LPRs the other day. And with those….your car is in public. Body cams are going to capture info about people, IN PRIVATE.
          Apparently it’s the 4th amendment be damned

        • g2reason April 21, 2015 at 9:48 pm #

          Its a concern, yes.
          Video exonerates more police, good. (Keep in mind that just because some prosecutor half ass tries to get an indictment, and don’t – the guys not innocent)
          Video proves when they do bad stuff, good.

        • Yankeefan April 22, 2015 at 8:44 pm #

          Always remember, video has exonerated more cops than they’ve convicted
          Then you guys should be screaming for all cops to wear body cameras so we can all sit around an watch how right you guys are. You want people to believe you give 2 damns about privacy? I mean for the love of everything holy. Cops all across this country have been using the cell phone tracking technology. They sign non disclosure agreements and then believe that gives them a shield from telling the judges. We know they are using it without warrants. There are main stream stories to prove it. This technology can access the details of my phone and everything on it and the police can have a look to their hearts desire but you guys want to sit here and talk about our privacy as if that means a damn thing to any of you.

    • Yankeefan April 21, 2015 at 2:03 am #

      Not to disagree but based on my ride along experience, cameras are welcome based on the officers I talked to. Especially my ride along who believes they are essential. In 1 call, we were in a mans home for an hour, with 30 minutes recorded before the officer turned it off. The point is not to stop misconduct but to keep police honest, In any free society, power give must be controlled and watched. Not…just take our word for it like police are doing now with stingray. Sorry but no dice. Cameras are catching cops lying like it is free now. One could easily start a blog listing such cases. That is the main issues. It does protect both cop and citizen. If you want to be able to investigate your own and determine if you broke any laws or violated any policies , fine but someone needs to watch. That is reasonable.

      You are correct it is objective reasonableness but that’s not carte blanche to mess up. “I feared for my life” can’t be a punch line to a joke anymore. But this line is the reason why we need educated cops. I forget his name but he was a former SS agent who carries a PhD and he believes that police should be required to have a degree and that citizens should demand it as uneducated officers are shortchanging their citizens. Giving someone power to deprive someone of life legally and their freedom is the most awesome power one can have and we regularly invest that in persons with no degree. Hell, I work with fisheries biologists where they need a bachelors degree to do fish analysis but we do not expect it for cops! It is like a circle. There is a reason why scientific studies have been done talking about officers education levels in relation to use of force. And in one informational piece I rwad talking about Florida cops, they found that most of the cops that had sustained? complaints (75%) were high school diploma only compared to (11%) that had a college degree.

      See, how this topic can be a big circle. Cameras are not a bad idea at all. I do get what you and T are saying and that is a concern. But the idea is to make sure the people that have law enforcement power are doing it correct. So far, you and t are the only ones I have seen express opposition to them. As I stated above, the officers I met believe they are a great idea.

      And even though this wasn’t addressed. this is more for free. When you mentioned the line, but not the “public’s” reason, it made me think how the police are no less the PR whores than anyone you can think of. What was the real reason for the NYPD stoppage? To get the public’s support. Why did the Baltimore PD create a youtube video to thank the citizens for 50k twitter followers? PR is the reason. Although the newspapers response was better. The NYPD’s, send a pic of a citizen with a cop was a PR ploy. A disastrous PR ploy as the response was to show what people think of the police there. Nothing but thugs!

      • t April 21, 2015 at 6:17 am #

        YF:
        I agree that then ameras are welcome.
        My point about them has been they are a demanded violation of your rights.
        People are stomping their feet…..demanding that we strip them and their neighbors off their privacy rights.
        I’ve weitten many times that Pete…who used to call for body cams…wrote an article here explain that he had changed his mind and saw them as a danger because the cameras record indiscriminately. And the CB editor crowd seems to have back away from it as well. Several ACLU groups have also stopped calling for them…..because they record everything….everywhere….all the time.

        As for the “I feared for me life”
        Call it what you’d like. But look at this and other sites….constant calls for violence against the police. Constant calls for violent resistance. Constant calls for everyone to carry weapons. And even worse….the aggressive defense of those that act violently towards the police and others. Tamir Rice and Mike Brown jump to mind.

        • Yankeefan April 21, 2015 at 9:15 pm #

          Touching on the education, the question is what do YOU believe? I wish I could remember the article and his name but the story was about a former SS Agent who has a PhD who believes it should be made mandatory since we are giving the most awesome power we can think of to a police officer. He stated communities should demand it of their cops and he is right. The officer I rode with, who also attends the same church I do, told me base don his experience, that maybe 305 of the cops on the force with the OPD have a college degree. The only hard numbers I have seen were from 2007-8 from the Houston PD and it was a whopping 51.4% or something close to that, that had a degree. Most major PD here in California do not have it as a requirement and until we do, I will assume the numbers of cops who have one is relatively low.
          As to cameras, I get the concerns. They are valid and I do not have a magic answer but this just trust us mentality is crap. When I watch a video of 10 cops kick a guy into oblivion that screams for more protection for citizens who do film and screams for cops to wear cameras. I agree there are privacy concerns but I am more concerned about correctness and cameras provide that. Not only for the officer, but the citizen!

          • t April 23, 2015 at 10:23 am #

            YF:
            We don’t have it as a requirement either.

            You are talking about large PDs. Most PDs are anything but.
            Somewhere in Missouri 5 officers just resigned because of the newly elected Mayor. That left 1 guy on the PD.
            ITS LIKE 85-87% of all PDs in the country are small with less than 15 guys total. The large PDs are the rarity.

            And I can look at the SS guy and say that’s fine as he making $100,000 grand a year. Those small towns with those small PDs simply can’t afford it.
            I can also look at him and discuss first hand about the inability of those PHD and masters guys that can’t relate to people.

            One of the things that we (PDs collectively) struggle with is that issue. I be trained dozens and dozens of guys. The college kids were useless to dangerous. They have ZERO life experience. They are like @Ray and RAD who think real life is like a book they read somewhere. It’s not.

            My uncle has been a college professor and chair of his department for all of my life. He will straight up tell you that college has very little to do with education. It’s now not much more than about the money. They produce a product not an education. Now….it’s like everything else….it’s what you make of it. If you’re weak minded….you will believe everything you are told. If you are a stronger mind….you’ll listen and weigh it in with everything else you know.

            So there is the issues:
            College guy with little to no life experience.
            Military guy that frequently can only do as told
            Layman that wants to make a difference.
            Mix of those things.

            There’s is no simple or even right answer. We do extensive background checks on people. We do polygraphs and pyshcologicals. Where I work it’s a year of training before your on your own.
            A Masters or PHD doesn’t change that.

          • Yankeefan April 23, 2015 at 11:21 pm #

            I think this is a good set of responses. I agree with you and your views here.

            Just speaking for me. I believe wholeheartedly in police being required to have a 4 year degree. It is expected in most professions that are white collar now. In the mecical field, Pharm Techs, med assistants, nurses and many others have them. I know dental assistants that have bachelor equivalents due to their many trainings. It is a mark of professionalism.

            The main thing a degree does is instill a way of thinking, talking and writing. All skills that police use and need. It is about training the mind to think and analyze and not just go all brute. It is not about making a better person. It is about having a certain expectation of what the people of a community expects of their police. Anything I have read that talks about police and education indicates in almost every way, educated officers use force less and find themselves on the receiving end of fewer complaints compared to their non college degree educated counterparts. I think that is 100% true. In a profession that deals with decisions that may deprive someone of liberty and life, it should be demanded that cops have a mark of professionalism.

            You talk about behavior testing. That is perfect but even that doesn’t guarantee anything. Look at the 9 NJ port authority probies that were termed the day they graduated I believe. They went to a bar to celebrate and went hog wild. The cherry on the parfait was them flashing their badges saying we are cops, so we can act like jerks. Go look it up. They finished the race to earn their badges then went and got all stupid. What was missed along the way?

            But I agree. There is no magic recipe but we have to start somewhere. When the hiring requirements are, High school diploma and no felonies, that is not the best and those standards do not draw in the best recruits. You are correct about what colleges are these days but that doesn’t diminish the accomplishments that those people earn.

      • Sikko April 21, 2015 at 7:59 am #

        You bring up excellent points, as always, and I know that, for me, the subject really boils down to looking at both the positive and negative sides of the issues. For me, it’s not an issue of body cameras or not, because they can be a useful tool. However, it is not in the best interest of anyone to consider the potential abuses that body cameras could bring about, particularly if we go with a popular idea amongst many of the commenters here, that being an always on body camera. Common Sense highlighted several potential abuses, and as someone that has been through a contentious divorce and custody fight, the potential abuse is a significant consideration for me.

        It is certainly imperative that we maintain positive accountability of police, but from my perspective, it’s equally imperative to maintain privacy rights, rather than surrender them. It boils down, for me, to a question of whether cameras are the best answer, or are they simply the most convenient answer.

        • Yankeefan April 21, 2015 at 8:51 pm #

          As I told CS above, I do not have the answers either but accountability is needed. The one area that could improve is the citizens who film police and look what has happened there. Every federal court has ruled it is a right because cops took it up the court chain claiming we don’t have that right. The Glik case gets mentioned. Go read the reasoning behind the officers going to the 1st. Department after department needing to craft a policy on the rights of citizens to record cops. Why do we need a policy?

          The point is someone needs to watch the police. That is not a conspiracy issue or an all cops are bad. It is me, a student of history knowing what happens to peoples in countries where power isn’t controlled. We live in a unique country where we elect our leaders who in turn create laws based on the will of the people and a group chosen from the people enforce those laws. The disconnect is police in this day seem to have disconnected from community policing. What the people think doesn’t matter. I am not asking police to take opinion polls but when you have a I don’t give a damn attitude, it spawns issues we see today. As I shared above, department after department under court review/overhaul. Look at Ferguson and the numbers of warrants issued:

          To give some context as to how truly extreme this is, a comparison may be useful. In 2014, the Boston Municipal Court System, for a city of 645,000 people, issued about 2,300 criminal warrants. The Ferguson Municipal Court issued 9,000, for a population 1/30th the size of Boston’s.

          My point is to state the police have this mentality towards people and look at what it creates. No one disputes fines happen or need to. But when we do this to people, we have issues. That is why we watch the police and that’s why the voice of the people does matter and that is why we need to make sure there is some accountability so people do not become a slave to the system. For me, I agree with your positions and there are concerns with cops wearing cameras but we are living in a time where police are, and have been using, Stingray without court permission. Just go google the stories. For me, gone are the days of just trust us!

          • Sikko April 21, 2015 at 9:35 pm #

            I can’t disagree with your points at all, and what I really think the greatest problem lies not so much with the police, generally speaking, but with the overall shift in our society. Going back to the recent article here on the “free range children” actually highlights that shift. As a society we are disconnected, despite all the technology that we claim keeps us more connected than ever. Neighborhoods have ceased to be tight knit communities, and have become a collection of passing acquaintances at best. Many of the issues police are called in to help resolve today are those which used to be resolved neighbor to neighbor. As a person who has moved a good deal in his lifetime, having lived in 7 different states and 12 different cities/municipalities throughout the range from urban to rural, I have watched this steady decline. It was common in my childhood to introduce oneself to the neighbors upon moving into a neighborhood, and getting to know each other, but these days it is treated as nearly bizarre to do so. This is reflected in the way people have become disconnected from their civic duties as well. Few see the benefit in being involved, because they can’t see the pitfalls of not being involved. Whether that be participating in local elections, or doing what is necessary as part of a community to both aid and hold our appointed officials, including law enforcement, accountable.

            We are faced with a multifaceted issue, and there is no one clear solution, as the issue presents itself in different ways in different places.

          • Yankeefan April 22, 2015 at 1:38 am #

            I don’t want to make it seems as if I am a cop hater. I am cynical and for good reason. This Stingray usage for example. That is dangerous when you have cops acting without judicial restraint. No misrepresentation there. They are doing it but the cops on here are silent about that. Reason period to justify cops telling judges in open court, Sorry your honor but I can’t answer that as we signed a non disclosure agreement. And even though I believe society has their role, the onus is on the police. T one time stated that if he does his job right, people will be mad. I flat out disagreed. People have a reasonable expectation of how cops should do their jobs. I know I do. I think it is imperative for the police and communities to have a, marriage, if you will. Generally speaking, if you look at the citizens complaining, see what the issue is all about. Take Indiana that passed that affirmative self defense law that allows persons to use measures to remove cops from their homes if they believe the cops are there without cause. Go read that law. It is most interesting.

            When I mention these DOJ reports, it isn’t a single cop or a small bunch. It is a systemic, top to bottom failure on the part of the leadership to command and control their officers, enact proper discipline, enforce policies, fail to do proper investigations. That is what pisses people off. I agree in part with CS in that the police shouldn’t wring their hands over what the people think all day but they better be aware of how they are looked upon. There is a reason why the police do what they do in public. Charity events, appearances, cops handing out sticker badges and doing in uniform toy drives. Sure there are good, kind hearted people that care but as an organization it is about PR AND anyone who believes cops do not care what the public thinks of them is fooling themselves. Look at the NYPD’s twitter PR ploy. They thought the people would gush over the cops and what was the real response? You are all a bunch of thugs as pic after pic was of cops engaging in violence. Even if it was a good arrest and justifiable use of force, the message was clear.

            To bring it home. The people need to use their power to vote in politicians to do what we want. We have the power to do anything through the voting process. We can have our legislators enact any laws we desire if we feel we need to and sometimes, we the people, need to speak up. Like I stated above, look at the law passed in Indiana. I do not mean we should all do that but laws to control the police and make sure they do what we want them to do, need to be enacted. The police need to take a hard look at themselves and ask themselves if they are providing community policing. Are cops citing anyone who goes 1mph over (still a violation) or are they getting rid of gangs, which means more drugs and guns. Respond to the community instead of poaching them. I am not a cop hater by any means. I see them everyday on the light rail I take and I don’t mean the blue shirt transit cops who only do on train citations and never carry. I mean the same Sacramento PD officers or the same Sacramento County Sheriff officers. Very good people, approachable and as normal as you or me

      • Common Sense April 21, 2015 at 9:15 am #

        I would agree with most of what you say. I think its like anything else with the government. “If we can do this, what else can we do.”

        So now you have hours of rather boring footage, but I bet it wouldn’t be boring to someone else. Whether that is some defense attorney, a civil rights attorney, CPS, DHS, or even the FBI. You will see the police stop out of fear of being questioned. I read one system records everything inside and outside the car. For the CB they would be in love with it, but for the victim of domestic violence, rape or maybe a shooting witness, guess what, you’re on tape, subject to FOIA, release to the media and viewing at trial.

        Society, in its zeal to stamp out rare and sometimes shocking police abuse, has open itself up to a massive loss of privacy. Even now, look at the white papers from the ACLU, they are easing back. Even PDs are saying “well, its a good idea, but we’ll just keep on keeping on, skip cameras and let risk management handle anything that happens.” I just worry, this will not have the result that the public anticipated.

        I think that best thing for LE in general is two fold, increase the educational requirements to at least a 4 year degree and the double the pay. Most people who make an “excellent” wage tend not to fuck up. They have a nice house, boat, nice items and don’t want to risk them for some bullshit with a drunk. The issue is no one will go for it and the ACLU will object. LE should stay away from social media. It doesn’t really several a purpose, its not a popularity contest.

        • t April 21, 2015 at 11:35 am #

          CS:
          Spot on about the cameras

          I’ve worked with our tecruiters for a long time.
          It’s tough. With the constant push to get minorites hired….without a substantial pay increase we’ll never hire any demanding a degree.

          Most of the guys we hire have degrees and most have a bachelors or something else working for them to make them attractive.
          But small PDs…and 85% of PDs are small as o. Less than 15 guys total…will REALLY struggle with any of that.

          I work with a lot of guys who…who like myself…walked away from much higher paying jobs for this career. But we hire a bunch of guys straight out of college with zero real life experience who are just looking for a job and ex military guys who think it’s the same things as the mitary…..all of that is very challenging for PDs.

          The camera thing just is what it is.
          I think you’ll see FOIA adjustments in that if there isn’t a compelling reason….you won’t be able to get video. The personal abuses…with the police as a reluctant tool…will be rule of the day.

          It’ll be funny if they believe you about the ACLU backing off their stance. I’ve been writing it for a long time and always accused of lying.

        • Yankeefan April 21, 2015 at 8:34 pm #

          I do not disagree with you either. I wish I knew the correct answer but there needs to be one and I think it should happen. I know it is policy with the Oakland PD and it is a good tool. Most people when dealing with cops, I do not believe are going to be all worried about being recorded. I could be wrong but I doubt it. One call I was involved, was a missing persons and we sat in his house for 30 minutes and the gentleman never said a word when the officer said out loud “I should turn this off now as this is all good” or whatever he said.

          You mentioned rare. What is rare? In a 2 year period, the Baltimore had 3043 complaints going back to 2012 and 1203 were sustained. That is 40% and it involved over 800 officers. That is not rare, that is on the border of common. There is a reason why they ASKED for a DOJ review. To get their department back in order. Department after department facing overhauls and court oversight. When it comes to education, we should demand it. It is not about screwing up, it is about a mark of professionalism. As to salary, some cops already make 160k plus a year with overtime and bonuses. Paying a cop more than an orthopedic surgeon is not feasible. Should they make a decent wage? Yes but they already do. Not all but many do. The average salary for a fisheries biologist with a 4 year degree is near 80k/year. I know as I work with them.

          ***The Sun found from 2012 through this July, there have been 3,048 misconduct complaints against officers — 1,203 of which were sustained. In that time, a staggering 850 officers faced discipline.***

          http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2014/10/20/baltimore-police-partner-with-justice-department-to-stop-brutality/

          But you may be right. It may not have the desired impact but something needs to happen. This just take our word for it mentality is not acceptable. You are right, it isn’t a popularity contest but departments have gone to the other extreme. When you don’t care about the people you serve you lose the people and that is not good. Community policing seems to be lacking in many areas in this country and I think that is part of the problem!

          • t April 22, 2015 at 2:52 pm #

            YF:
            Complaints are crazy common.
            “Misconduct”. That’s a big catagory. Demeanor complaints fall into that catagory.

            As for the camera story from your ride along. He may change his mind he he finds that visit on YouTube. In the moment….it’s never the issue.
            Look up Kitsap WA about body cameras. There are LOTS of issues. Then of course there are those that still bitch when the video clearly shows no wrong doing by the police.
            And that’s not even touching on the very real fact the the cameras are still
            Very limited in what they show.

            I’ve been pro camera my entire career. But the issues within are very real. Many state legislatures have begun to realize the and have started working on legal remedies about it.

          • Yankeefan April 22, 2015 at 3:43 pm #

            Yes it is a big category but a PD that large doesn’t invite an external review over demeanor issues. It was so bad there that the official newspaper put a parody video in response to their thank you for 50k Twitter followers video. As to the cameras, all valid interns but i believe the use is good. If there is going to be a movement to curtail their use, it will be that, curtailed not eliminated or restricted when they can be on. Look at the study done by the Rialto pd here and look at the results. Complaints dropped by 88% and use of force by 60%. All good numbers all round. They keep everyone honest. The cops and the citizens they deal with. I am, as we speak, reading a story talking about the Pittsburgh pd and how the ACLU supports their use. Also go to the ACLU page and they talk about how they support camera usage. There is a pDf dated madch2015 talking about their use. They have concerns but they support their use.

          • t April 23, 2015 at 8:41 am #

            YF
            I’ll agree.
            I’m in favor of the body cams that have a screen on the front showing YOU that YOU are being recorded.
            For what you see as the cameras curtailing police misconduct….I know is really suspects not acting out as bad.
            Guy we get complaints all the time about officers doing all kinds of things. A quick review of the video….complaints are lying.
            In one of the cases where I sued a guy….it was over an excessive use of force complaint where I could have been fired. No keep in mind….this subject had ZERO injuries and didn’t file his complaint until after he had been found guilty in court….but the allegations were bad. Thankfully there was third party video that showed that nothing he said had happened. In fact…it was an incredibly “non incident” kind of incident. Wholly unremarkable.

            I only being that up as like I’ve said….we’ve been recording ourselves for decades. The introduction of a body cam can have a chilling effect on suspect behavior….and that’s a very good thing.

            But like you info above from the ACLU….they are already bitching and not liking that the video captures it all. You can’t have it both ways.

          • Yankeefan April 22, 2015 at 3:47 pm #

            So, from their own mouths, they support this technology and I did a google search and found story after story talking about the growing trend to have cops wear cameras. They will not go away. If anything, they will be restricted or regulated as to when when and where but they will not go away.

          • Yankeefan April 22, 2015 at 3:50 pm #

            I WAS ABLE TO POST THE EXCERPT i MENTIONED:

            Use of Recordings
            The ACLU supports the use of cop cams for the purpose of police accountability and oversight. It’s vital that this technology not become a backdoor for any kind of systematic surveillance or tracking of the public. Since the records will be made, police departments need to be subject to strong rules around how they are used. The use of recordings should be allowed only in internal and external investigations of misconduct, and where the police have reasonable suspicion that a recording contains evidence of a crime. Otherwise, there is no reason that stored footage should even be reviewed by a human being before its retention period ends and it is permanently deleted. Nor should such footage be subject to face recognition searches or other analytics.

            the website I got the March 2015 pdf:

            https://www.aclu.org/police-body-mounted-cameras-right-policies-place-win-all?redirect=technology-and-liberty/police-body-mounted-cameras-right-policies-place-win-all

          • t April 23, 2015 at 8:27 am #

            YF:
            See….there in lies the issue.
            They now want selectivity.
            The camera is unblinking. It gets it all.
            And if youngest that….it runs against FOIA.

            And as for “Backdoor surveillance”. Nonsense. The officer is already there Anything the camera can see….so can be.
            The idea is as silly as @Shawn bitch about LPRs. If you are driving on a “public street”…you have ZERO expectation of privacy. An LPR running your tag is no different than an officer being behind you and running your tag.
            Back in the day i would be stopped at a red light and run 5-6 tags at the light. No RS is needed. It’s PUBLIC. You can get tag info too. Just onto the DMV.

            Activists want it just their own way.
            They want to record….but not be recorded.
            It the “only my rights matter” mentality.
            They want others to be accountable…but not themselves. It is evidenced all the time on this site.

    • keepitreal April 21, 2015 at 3:03 pm #

      Austin Texas cops are figuring out how to deal with all of these issues. Their initial plan is to exclude most video from the public records / open disclosure laws.

    • Yankeefan April 22, 2015 at 8:33 pm #

      Common Sense • 2 days ago

      Its the greatest invasion of privacy in history, and the public screamed for it.

      The use of Stingray is and we didn’t scream for it. Using that technology without judicial approval is the greatest invasion of privacy in history. We have a system of checks and balances. I guess that whole “take it to the courts” line only applies to non cops.

  3. keepitreal April 20, 2015 at 3:01 pm #

    Why did he have to write a fictionalized account? So he could make claims that would get him sued if he voiced them as fact? And, no, some of you blithering morons, I’m not supporting or condemning what happened. Just curious why the story had to be fictionalized. As far as the Costco camera malfunctioning, that’s pretty easy to verify or prove a lie. If they have a system installed within the last few years, it’s digital. So subpoena the footage from the incident in question. If the camera was down, there will be a “video loss” message on the screen for the entire time the camera was non-functioning. Or they will be able to at least show a multi-camera view with the camera in question being blanked out. Lots of questions about both sides of the story.

    • Sikko April 20, 2015 at 3:32 pm #

      “Why did he have to write a fictionalized account?”

      From a couple of interviews he has done, I get the impression that he wrote the fictionalized account as part of his grieving process. Fictionalizing the account would have allowed him to explore avenues that would help assuage his grief. Additionally, a fictional account allows for a better avenue for profit, as his book has achieved some success, which helps enable him to speak out as he does.

      • keepitreal April 20, 2015 at 6:31 pm #

        Make sense. Although I don’t understand how fictionalizing it would allow any more closure than writing a real account in which he merely prefaced everything he wrote with, I believe, or, in my opinion. The profit motive, sadly, rings all to true. I wonder what kind of relationship he even had with his kid.

        • Sikko April 20, 2015 at 6:42 pm #

          Well, going with a fictional account would allow him to explore avenues of thought that he wouldn’t otherwise explore, which would arise from the need to create convincing characters. Fiction also would allow him to step away from being so close to the emotional center of the situation, as his fictional account would be that of an imaginary stranger. There is also much to be said about the cathartic nature of creative writing in the first place.

          I find absolutely nothing wrong with the profit motive aspect. Both the act of promoting his book and speaking up about his son’s story can comfortably share the same format, and the more profit he makes, the more people is able to reach.

        • Bill Scott April 21, 2015 at 3:38 pm #

          Damn good relationship, keepitreal. “The Permit” also has proven to be exactly what it was intended: A very effective weapon in my asymmetric war with the Las Vegas Cartel of Corruption. It’s “faction,” not fiction. #ThePermit

    • Bill Scott April 21, 2015 at 3:37 pm #

      Why fiction: Because my lawyers, at the time, wouldn’t allow me to write the NONfiction version. That nonfiction version’s almost finished now. Stay tuned….

      Slight correction: The Costco cameras were working fine. Metro cops and Costco’s corrupt LPO, Shai Lierley (who made the patently false 911 call that led to Erik’s murder), claimed the DVR’s hard drive failed–which is a lie. Fully 96% of the digital data on that hard disk was recovered. Isn’t it convenient that the 4% that could NOT be recovered just happened to cover the time Erik was in Costco AND being shot to death out front. And why couldn’t that 4% be recovered? Because forensic experts testified that the hard disk’s recording media (platters/sectors) were physically damaged, as if the disk had been running, then dropped from about chest high (yes, it’s in the record of testimony at the Coroner’s Inquest hearing).

      Finally, why would crack LV Metro detectives leave that hard disk/DVR in Costco’s hands/control for FIVE days, after Erik was shot to death? And Costco’s Lierley admitted taking it to their local IT contractor to “recover lost data” but that same company did a LOT of work for Las Vegas Metro PD. Hmmm….

      • t April 22, 2015 at 2:24 pm #

        Wait wait wait…..
        So let me get this right:
        YOU think the Costco was able to drop a hard drive….from chest high…and selectively dance only 4% of the video….AND ONLY the 4% that showed your sons activities?!?!?!?

        Maybe it runs in the family

        • Bill Scott April 23, 2015 at 1:23 pm #

          Not me. That statement was made by Costco’s IT contractor AND a Secret Service digital forensics agent from Los Angeles, who examined the damaged hard drive. Both testified and made that “dropped” suggestion during the laughable cop-clearing circus of an inquest hearing in late September 2010. It’s in the record.

          • t April 23, 2015 at 9:24 pm #

            Wow.
            Amazingly bad luck.

            The dropped hard drive….everyone lying just to kill your son….who nobody knew.

            Yeah…that makes sense.

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