PRESIDENT

OKC Police Turn Off Officer Body Cameras

Oklahoma City Police are turning off their body cameras after a dispute between the police department and its police union.

The body cameras were launched in January while the Police Department was in the midst of negotiating a new contract with the unions.

The body cameras, however, were not included in discussions.

The police union has many concerns with the cameras, including the possibility of random monitoring, or “fishing expeditions,” by supervisors and the use of footage for retaliation.

Oklahoma City Chief of Police Bill Citty says that police department policies will prevent a supervisor from scrutinizing an officer that they “don’t like,” but adds that supervisors have the right to monitor their officers.

One possible solution is to only make the footage accessible to supervisors only after a complaint has been filed, similar to the way officer vehicle GPS information is handled, Police Union President John George said.

The police department and the union may have to go back to arbitration if they cannot come to an agreement about the body cameras.

Returning to negotiations could keep the body cameras switched off for at least six to nine months, said George.

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