Mayor, Commissioner Form Police Body Camera Working Group

IMAGE: Mayor Rawlings-Blake and Commissioner Batts announce a body camera working group

Mayor Rawlings-Blake, Commissioner Batts Announce Formation of Police Body Camera Working Group

Group to explore cost and all associated aspects of potential body camera implementation within BPD

BALTIMORE, Md. (October 17, 2014)—Today, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake was joined by Police Commissioner Anthony Batts and community leaders to announce the formation of a working group that will assess and explore the potential implementation of body cameras for officers in the Baltimore Police Department (BPD). The working group is comprised of law enforcement officials, legal representatives, information technology specialists, community members, and clergy.

The working group will provide the mayor with a comprehensive written report, which will include recommendations based on careful examination of the benefits and risks of body camera implementation, including cost, privacy, video storage, and the appropriate scope of such a program for Baltimore City.

"When worn effectively, body cameras can increase accountability and transparency for our police force, but we need to make sure that we address a number of concerns, ranging from cost to privacy," said Mayor Rawlings-Blake. "This working group will review the implications of implementing a body camera program. While some would think we should just roll out a plan, this is something too important not to get right."

This working group is the latest announcement from the Rawlings-Blake Administration that focuses on increasing transparency and accountability within BPD following a series of public safety forums hosted by the mayor and police commissioner earlier in the year.

In addition to building upon preliminary research conducted by BPD over the past year, the working group will also investigate potential legal challenges and favorable operating policies regarding the use of body cameras.

"We will not stop looking for ways to better connect with our community and will we never stop the work of becoming the police department they demand," added BPD Commissioner Batts.

Members of the Police Body Camera Working Group

  • Rev. Dr. Jamal Harrison Bryant, pastor, Empowerment Temple (co-chair)
  • James R. Benjamin, Jr., attorney, Pessin Katz Law, P.A. (co-chair)
  • Jacqueline Caldwell, president, Greater Mondawmin Coordinating Council
  • Mark Washington, executive director, Coldstream-Homestead-Montebello Community Corporation
  • David Ralph, deputy city solicitor, Baltimore City Law Department
  • Suzanne Sangree, chief, Baltimore Police Department Legal Affairs
  • David Rocah, senior staff attorney, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
  • Jerry Rodriguez, deputy commissioner, Baltimore Police Department
  • Col. Garnell Green, commander, Baltimore Police Department Office of Internal Oversight (OIO)
  • Gene Ryan, incoming president, Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge #3
  • Andrew Nebus, director of information technology, Baltimore Police Department
  • L. Jerome Mullen, interim director, Mayor's Office of Information Technology (MOIT)
  • Kirsten Silveira, budget management analyst, Baltimore City Bureau of the Budget and Management Research (BBMR)
  • Michael L. Marshall, attorney, Schlachman, Belsky & Weiner, P.A.
  • The Honorable Brandon M. Scott, councilman, Baltimore City Council District 2
  • The Honorable Curt Anderson, state delegate, Maryland House of Delegates District 43

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