Police Scotland frontline officers to get bodycams by 'late summer'

Chief constable Jo Farrell has said body-worn video is a 'top priority'.

Police Scotland frontline officers to get bodycams by ‘late summer’ PA Media

Body-worn cameras will be rolled out to frontline Police Scotland officers in “late summer”, the force’s chief constable has said.

Chief constable Jo Farrell said in a report, set to go before the Scottish Police Authority (SPA) board meeting on Thursday, since taking on the role in October last year, one of her top priorities has been to equip more officers with the video cameras, generally worn on the officer’s chest.

She said: “We continue to work through considerations around the cross-system, digital evidence sharing capability (DESC) – a crucial capability to share evidence captured, for example, by officers through body-worn video, to help prosecutors and courts make quicker decisions about proceedings and secure swifter resolutions.

“One of my first commitments to my fellow officers and staff when I joined Police Scotland was that we had to push on with the rollout of body-worn video.

“We are moving at pace and I expect rollout of body-worn video to frontline officers and staff to begin in the late summer.”

At a previous SPA board meeting in November, the possibility of giving more officers tasers was also discussed.

Ms Farrell said assaults on police officers and staff have fallen but any assault is one too many.

She said bodycams and Tasers both could impact “positively” on behaviour and wanted consideration given to increasing the number of officers who carry the devices.

SPA chairman Martyn Evans said such requests were scrutinised “very carefully” but the board would not block it if it was deemed a proportional response to policing need.

The SPA said it could not provide comment ahead of Thursday’s meeting.

Police Scotland was contacted for comment.

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