The detachment commander of the Castlegar RCMP welcomes the introduction of body cameras for officers, but says vetting the footage could be a big job.
In answer to a question from city council this week, Sgt. Monty Taylor said local officers are expected to begin wearing the cameras in 2024.
A pilot project has been ongoing in Nova Scotia, Alberta, and Nunavut to work out any problems before the cameras are extended across the country.
“I think it’s going to help a lot, not only with our investigations but also accountability to people, because people behave a lot more when they know a camera’s watching them,” he said. “I think it will resolve a lot of questions.”
At approximately $3,000 per officer per year they don’t come cheap, but Taylor said that annual fee includes the storage of footage and maintenance.
It will also be the responsibility of an officer or clerk to review the downloaded footage, Taylor said.
“If we’re out in the public and you have 120 people [with] license plates, all of that stuff will have to be manually vetted and scrubbed out because we have to respect the privacy of people that aren’t involved. It is going to be time consuming. That’s one of my concerns.”