Sunday, September 15, 2019

When will St. Johns County law enforcement have body cameras and vehicle cameras?

There's a $15 million unrestricted reserve budget surplus in the proposed FY 2020 St. Johns County Board of County Commission budget.  At the September 12, 2019 budget hearing, I requested at least $500,000 for body cameras. A budget is a moral document.

Let's put money in the FY 2020 St. Johns County, St. Augustine and St. Augustine Beach budgets for police body cameras and vehicle cameras. Otherwise, our budgets are not moral documents, but endorsements of the Reign of Error of immoral St. Johns County Sheriff DAVID SHOAR.

Body cameras and police vehicle cameras improve police behavior, improve citizen behavior and increase trust in government.

Police body cameras and vehicle cameras are diabolically opposed by our corrupt, duplicitous St. Johns County Sheriff DAVID SHOAR, who legally changed his name from "HOAR" in 1994.

SHOAR removed the few police vehicle cameras upon taking office.  He denied this when we last had a conversation, on March 13, 2014, but former Deputy Debra Maynard is an eyewitness to this fact.

DAVID SHOAR stated in his 2016 League of Women Voters debate appearance with Debra Maynard that he rejects the "false narrative" that cops "need to be watched," showing his contempt for the Rule of Law and the standard of care on police body cameras.  He also raised concerns about "privacy."

If an officer is sued for civil rights violations or false arrest, body camera footage would provide a complete defense, if the officer acted legally.    This can save years of depositions, motions, and litigation.  It can save careers.

If officers violate civil rights or make false arrests, body cameras provide the evidence to prevent wrongful prosecutions and convictions, provide the evidence for criminal prosecution and civil litigation, and provide then material for future training.

We want law-abiding lawmen.  It's that simple.  We reject Jim Crow law.  We reject KKK Sheriffs, like Lawrence O. Davis, to whom their is a pathetic paen on the website of St. Johns County Sheriff DAVID SHOAR.

I have no trust and confidence in any Sheriff who rejects the fundamental principles of American government.

Cops DO need to be watched.  So do presidents, senators, congressmen, judges, prosecutors, public defenders, government lawyers and officials.

That was the genius of our Founding Fathers,

In sharp contrast to James Madison, St. Johns County DAVID SHOAR is no genius: he is a fungible Southern Sheriff, a redneck peckerwood from western Massachusetts, a cynical sociopathic reprobate, who earned a Master's degree and managed to claw his way to the top of the heap in St. Johns County, leaving dead bodies in his wake, including those of Ms. Michelle O'Connell and Ms. Andrea Sheldon.

Sheriff DAVID SHOAR is too busy pimping for developers to care about people, or their rights.  He's retaliated against ethical officers like Debra Maynard and Catherine Payne.  He keeps wifebeaters on his payroll.  SHOAR is a stench in the nostrils of our Nation, exposed as a retaliatory coverup artist by PBS Frontline, The New York Times,  ABC 20/20, NBC Dateline, the Guardian, et al.  We the People reject his words and pomps.  SHOAR recently announced he won't seek re-election. Good riddance.

St. Johns County Sheriff candidate Thomas Reynolds (NPA) supports body cameras.

St. Johns County Sheriff candidate Christopher Strickland (R) gave a maladroit radio interview response to Thomas Reynolds' question yesterday flunked the laugh test.  Strickland wants to study the issue.  I saw him speak at Molassses Junction.  I've seen his Facebook page. Strickland doesn't impress me as particularly studious or astute or ethical.

While raising more than $138,000 in his campaign to date, Christopher Strickland has done nothing to impress anyone.

A disgruntled former henchman of Sheriff SHOAR, Christopher Strickland was on Facebook earlier this year and was asked whether he would enforce gun laws or federal laws of if he would be like western Sheriffs who said they would refuse to enforce laws with which they disagree  Strickland ineptly imbibed the invitation to lawbreaking, and stated that he would not enforce "unfunded mandates."  "Unfunded mandates." That's a dopey dupery DAVID SHOAR line, for sure, and presumably includes the First, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.  Strickland removed his post when I called him on it.

Recently announced St. Johns County Sheriff candidate Robert Hardwick (R) has not yet responded to my inquiry yesterday.

UPDATE, September 25, 2019:  Christopher C. Strickland now supports police body cameras.  SABPD Chief Robert Hardwick expressed support at the December 12, 2016 St. Augustine Beach City Commission meeting for body cameras.

Florida law provides:

Chapter 943
943.1718 Body cameras; policies and procedures.—
(1) As used in this section, the term:
(a) “Body camera” means a portable electronic recording device that is worn on a law enforcement officer’s person that records audio and video data of the officer’s law-enforcement-related encounters and activities.
(b) “Law enforcement agency” means an agency that has a primary mission of preventing and detecting crime and enforcing the penal, criminal, traffic, and motor vehicle laws of the state and in furtherance of that primary mission employs law enforcement officers as defined in s. 943.10.
(c) “Law enforcement officer” has the same meaning as provided in s. 943.10.
(2) A law enforcement agency that permits its law enforcement officers to wear body cameras shall establish policies and procedures addressing the proper use, maintenance, and storage of body cameras and the data recorded by body cameras. The policies and procedures must include:
(a) General guidelines for the proper use, maintenance, and storage of body cameras.
(b) Any limitations on which law enforcement officers are permitted to wear body cameras.
(c) Any limitations on law-enforcement-related encounters and activities in which law enforcement officers are permitted to wear body cameras.
(d) A provision permitting a law enforcement officer using a body camera to review the recorded footage from the body camera, upon his or her own initiative or request, before writing a report or providing a statement regarding any event arising within the scope of his or her official duties. Any such provision may not apply to an officer’s inherent duty to immediately disclose information necessary to secure an active crime scene or to identify suspects or witnesses.
(e) General guidelines for the proper storage, retention, and release of audio and video data recorded by body cameras.
(3) A law enforcement agency that permits its law enforcement officers to wear body cameras shall:
(a) Ensure that all personnel who wear, use, maintain, or store body cameras are trained in the law enforcement agency’s policies and procedures concerning them.
(b) Ensure that all personnel who use, maintain, store, or release audio or video data recorded by body cameras are trained in the law enforcement agency’s policies and procedures.
(c) Retain audio and video data recorded by body cameras in accordance with the requirements of s. 119.021, except as otherwise provided by law.
(d) Perform a periodic review of actual agency body camera practices to ensure conformity with the agency’s policies and procedures.
(4) Chapter 934 does not apply to body camera recordings made by law enforcement agencies that elect to use body cameras.
History.—s. 1, ch. 2016-76; s. 1, ch. 2017-15.

(More later)

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