On Oct. 1, the Metropolitan Police Department will start a pilot program to test mounting body cameras on officers. The six-month, $1-million program, will monitor 165 police officers as they make their rounds. Officers will be required to begin recording as soon as they receive a call for service until they finish the call. After 90 days, the video will be deleted unless it is being used in an investigation.
The program hopes to increase department transparency and lower the number of complaints with the police department.
The pilot program will use five different models of cameras, costing between $400 and $700, mounted on their head, shoulders or shirt. If the pilot goes well, all 4,000 MPD officers may be wearing cameras within the next few years.
Getting police officers to wear body cameras has gained national momentum since the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., on Aug. 9. Mayor Vince Gray said that this has been in the planning since before the events in Ferguson.
DCFerguson will be holding a march and rally on Oct. 4 at 7 p.m. in Georgetown for police and criminal justice reform. The march and rally are demanding the arrest of Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson, the demilitarization of the police and the institutionalization of civilian review boards of the police with the right to hire and fire. The march will be starting at the Foggy Bottom-GWU Metro stop and head to Georgetown.
A press conference will be held on Sept. 26 at 11 a.m. by #DCFerguson that will feature representatives from the #DCFerguson leadership team giving details of the march. They will also be responding to the police departments decision to use body cameras. The press conference will be taking place at the L Street Bridge at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center