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D.C. body-cam program highlights issues of national concern
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D.C. body-cam access aired on Newseum TV

D.C. is at forefront of national debate over need to protect public access with sensitivity to crime victims' privacy concerns.

Flagstaff, Ariz., body camera video captures fatal encounter
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Coalition updates nationwide body cam access report

Find out how states, cities are addressing thorny issues of collection, retention and public access.

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Coalition's first amicus brief tests Council exemption claim

Superior Court ruling would create 'FOIA black hole' from which Council records might never escape.

Posted on Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - 12:29pm

Patrick Madden of WAMU-FM reports today (19) on District of Columbia police conduct using data from almost 500 sworn statements accompanying 1,713 gun charges filed in court 2010-15. He shows 40 percent were dismissed--tossed by the judge or withdrawn by the prosecutor after further review. (The data don't include arrests where prosecutors decline at the outset to proceed with charges, called "no papering."  All the cases studied had been filed in court, generating a criminal record for the accused. So the full extent of flawed street stops and arrests is unknown.)

Stop-and-frisk tactics elsewhere have been subject of intense research and legal challenge.

In D.C., the public has been concerned with over-aggressive street tactics that police say are needed to find and get rid of guns in the city. Video of one such incident drew much attention in recent weeks.

For transparency advocates, Madden’s reporting also showcases the utility of public records—made into valuable reporting in this case through the work of student researchers in the Investigative Reporting Workshop at the School of Communications at American University.

Posted on Sunday, August 12, 2018 - 4:24pm

As the firehose of information swells apace, many organizations and outlets are providing a handy aggregator (21st century term for "clipping service") so you can quickly catch up on a lot.  Here's the Open Government Coalition version for the dog days of July-August: