A Model for Prosecutor Office Management of BWC Video
Anne Arundel County, Maryland, State's Attorney has created a "Body-Worn Camera Unit" within their office to handle the processing of BWC video submitted to them by police agencies. Kudos to Anne Arundel County and the State of Maryland for supporting and funding this initiative. Though costly, this concept should be considered by prosecutors' offices throughout the country and the legislative bodies that fund them. This arm of the criminal justice system was left out of funding equations when BWC programs became increasing commonplace for police departments. Prosecutors are perhaps the largest consumer of BWC video but are frequently understaffed and underfunded to handle the workload. It is not uncommon to see some of this workload shifted back to police departments who are as equally short on resources. There are a lot of challenges and considerations when standing up such a unit. The obstacles shouldn't deter prosecutors' offices from pushing for a similar solution for their jurisdictions. The reality is that BWC video evidence isn't going away. Someone has to manage it and ultimately utilize it effectively in the judicial process. That is going to require adequate funding.