JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Gov. Rick Scott signed into law Thursday a bill which would require Florida law enforcement to set polices on body camera use. The law only applies to agencies which already have body cameras. It does not require other agencies to get them.
Over the years, body camera use has been at the center of debate when it comes to law enforcement. The Bradford County Sheriff's Office adopted the cameras years ago. However, the policy does not require deputies to use them. They are able to turn the cameras off if they want to.
A bill requires agencies, which already have the body cameras, to have usage standards in place and adequate video storage. It would also require officers to be trained on how to use the cameras. However, it does not require agencies to get the cameras.
"You'd have to hire a person to store it and maintain it," said News4Jax Crime and Safety Analyst, Gil Smith, "And also to retrieve information for courts and for media, and for citizens that want it. So it does require additional costs."
Bradford County is not the only agency to already adopt body cameras. The Flagler County Sheriff's Office and Brunswick police also use them, as do some police agencies.