Chairman Mahl’s Statement Regarding Release of BWC Footage

As most of you are aware, the Mayor’s Office has made the decision to release body camera footage of a police-involved shooting that took place on June 27 in the Fourth District.

I watched this video early this morning, and I would like to say first and foremost how proud I am of all the members involved in this situation. Your dedication to duty and respect for life are clearly portrayed in the video I watched.

As a reminder I want to emphasize that video - and especially body camera video - only present a very small piece to a large and complex puzzle. It is almost impossible to make any determination as to whether the use of force is justified or unjustified from one video, and I urge everyone to use restraint before making any type of judgment regarding the actions of the officers in this video or any other video that gets released.

I firmly believe the release of this video is absolutely inappropriate given where this incident is in the investigative process. There is an appropriate time when our body camera videos should be released, and that time is after any criminal or administrative investigations have concluded. I have made my feelings known on the inappropriateness of this video being released prematurely to those in the city government, and that by their release of the video, my members could perceive they are not being supported by the mayor’s office.

It is my hope that this single incident does not set any type of precedent, and body camera footage will be released at a more appropriate time in the future. This is a difficult time both mentally and emotionally for the members involved, and I do not want this hasty action by the mayor’s office to jeopardize anything more than our member’s perception of their city leaders.

As always, be safe, and watch you and your brothers’ and sisters’ backs.

M.N. Mahl
Chairman

Posted July 07 2016 at 4:03 PM by Matthew N. Mahl | Permanent Link

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