Elements of Body Camera Proposals
At the outset of this analysis, the Coalition focused on four areas relevant to the handling and availability of police body camera recordings:
- Collection of police body camera footage;
- Retention of police body camera footage;
- Applicability of existing Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) laws and exemptions; and
- Related police dashcam footage rules.
Legislative initiatives address some or all of these elements, the latter considered comprehensive proposals.
- Nearly half of states — twenty three in total — have passed some form of legislation addressing police body cam footage. Within the past year, states appear to have been moving in a more conservative direction, with several — such as Louisiana and North Carolina — adopting particularly restrictive laws relating to public access.
- Twelve states have not proposed any police body cam legislation at the state level:
- Of those, one has had a proposal enacted by a state administrative body.
- The remaining fifteen states have introduced legislation addressing police body cam footage, which either is under consideration, or has been debated and rejected in the legislative process.