December 2, 2014
For Immediate Release
Senators Malloy and Kimpson will pre-file legislation tomorrow requiring all law enforcement officers in the State of South Carolina to wear body cameras that can record any and all contact with persons in the performance of the law enforcement officers’ official duties.
“As chair of the Criminal Task Force, Sentence Reform Commission, Sentencing Oversight Commission and author of numerous bills in the criminal arena, my experience informs me that police officers should be collecting more evidence all the time,” stated Senator Malloy. “History has demonstrated that eyewitnesses are not always the most reliable form of evidence. It is time for South Carolina to invest in common sense technology. This investment is critical to preserving the integrity of our system of justice.”
“Disputed facts are often an issue in encounters with law enforcement as we’ve seen with the incident between Michael Brown and Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri,” stated Senator Kimpson. “Right here in Charleston, there remains a dispute about what happened to Denzel Currnell. It is important to note that while a dashboard camera did not stop South Carolina highway trooper Sean Groubert from shooting Levar Jones, it did lead to the officer’s firing and arrest. Body cameras would provide everyone a clearer picture of the facts,” continued Kimpson.
Representative Wendell Gilliard plans to introduce a similar bill in the House when pre-filing opens on December 11th. “I applaud Senators Malloy and Kimpson for filing this legislation. Over the summer, I met with many representatives of the law enforcement community and neighborhood leaders who indicated that they would welcome this legislation. Statistics confirm increased use of body cameras tend to reduce the number of confrontations,” said Representative Gilliard.