Should video from police body cameras be kept private?

Incident in Burnsville Police Dept. lobby
Courtesy Burnsville Police Department

“A bill introduced in the Minnesota House on Thursday would keep any videos recorded by police body cameras private, alarming those who say it would hinder efforts to hold police accountable,” writes MPR News reporter Tom Scheck.

Sponsors say the cameras are likely to record embarrassing personal information about people dealing with police at extremely traumatic points in their lives.

But others say if the videos are kept secret it defeats the purpose of the cameras, which is to record how officers interact with the public — and serve as a check on police abusing their authority.

A handful of police departments across Minnesota already are using body cameras.

“You could have a half naked housewife that’s been beat up with a bloody face, half naked kids running around,” said state Rep. Tony Cornish, R-Vernon Center. “You could have a gun collection. That information needs to remain private.”

Today’s Question: Should video from police body cameras be kept private?