Following Wednesday’s violent attack by domestic terrorists on the U.S. Capitol and the death of a Capitol Police officer and four others, Rep. Greg Stanton is pushing legislation to require all uniformed, on-duty Capitol Police officers to utilize body-worn cameras. He will introduce a bill proposing the requirement this week.
“For the safety of our Capitol Police officers, the public and everyone who works in the Capitol complex, it’s imperative that officers utilize body-worn cameras while on duty,” said Stanton. “Last week’s armed insurrection against our government and breach of the United States Capitol building stunned the world, and we have a lot to learn about what went wrong. But I’m certain that the investigation—and the process to hold those responsible to account—would be much more thorough if aided by footage from body cameras.”
Investigations of the attack on the Capitol will rely heavily on cell phone and surveillance videos in the absence of any body camera footage.
Stanton introduced a bill during the last Congress to make the use of body-worn cameras for law enforcement officers a condition of eligibility for COPS grants.
At a Judiciary Committee Oversight Hearing on Policing Practices and Law Enforcement Accountability in June, Stanton questioned panelists about the effectiveness of body-worn cameras on keeping both officers and the public safe. Recent research continues to show positive trends in the effects of officers wearing body cameras.