Walter Scott shooting: North Charleston to equip all police officers with body cameras

Mayor says that 251 body cameras are on order

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The Independent US

The North Charleston mayor has said that the city’s police department will equip all police officers in the city with body cameras after a white police officer was charged with murder in the shooting death of a black man who was running away from the officer.

Mayor Keith Summey said Wednesday that the North Charleston Police Department has ordered 101 body cameras and will order 150 additional cameras so that every officer on the street will be wearing one.

The mayor was speaking at a press conference held in response to the shooting death of Walter Scott at the hands of Officer Michael Slager. A video of the shooting has shocked the US and can be seen below. Warning, the video is disturbing.

 

The video was taken by a bystander to the events, but highlights the importance of video evidence in officer-involved shootings. After the shooting, the North Charleston PD initially sided with the officer, but they changed their stance after the video surfaced on Tuesday night.

Mr Slager has been charged with murder and fired from the police department.

The debate over equipping police with body cameras has grown in the last year after a string of officer-involved shootings in the US. Supporters contend that the cameras will remove many of the unknowns in such situations.

Some US police departments use body cameras, but the practice is far from ubiquitous.

 

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