Posted: Tuesday, April 5, 2022. 11:56 am CST.
By Aaron Humes: Police officers’ individual views notwithstanding, Communications Director Assistant Superintendent Fitzroy Yearwood says officers cannot stop subjects of searches from having someone videotape them and witness to ensure no shenanigans.
When the topic came up during Monday’s press briefing, he stated, “I am certain the Commissioner has addressed this on many occasions. We cannot stop you from using your personal device if you believe that we are doing something wrong. Even if we are not doing anything wrong, if I come and ask you for a search, and you are with any person and that person believe [that] to show transparency, it is best I video it, then we the police have nothing to hide unless of course, the police have something to hide, then you would be offended if someone is videoing a normal search.”
With an illustration of a recent incident that happened to one of his family members, ASP Yearwood went on to further explain with regard to the nature of searches at homes, in vehicles, and so on: “It is impossible for a single person that you’re searching their residence, to watch two officers search at the same time. The protocol when it comes to searching – if it’s a vehicle, it’s a residence – one person does the search where the owner or the proprietor could observe what that person is doing. It is not a regular practice, nor is it even a legal practice, for more than one officer to be conducting a search and there is only one person present to observe.”
For the further protection of the public, ASP Yearwood reminded, citizens, can request an officer’s name, rank, and regulation number, and “we are obligated to the public to give you that.” He added that some officers carry name tags, all officers carry an identification card and more recently, officers are outfitted with body cams.
Therefore, he concluded, “I don’t see, why if you’re videoing me, why that should matter to me if I’m doing my job the proper way.”
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