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Council members review audit on SDPD body worn cameras

Deputy quits after bodycam appears to catch him stealing
Posted at 11:54 AM, Oct 06, 2022

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — This summer's audit on the San Diego Police Department says officers were not using their body cameras properly.

City council members are digging into the report and suggestions for the department.

SDPD says it has already implemented some changes regarding body-worn cameras following the audit that was released in July. The report says not all officers turned on their body-worn cameras like they’re required to do.

Auditors made a presentation on the finding to the Public Safety and Livable Neighborhoods committee Thursday.

RELATED: Growing concern San Diego Police are not activating body cameras

Auditors say they could not find a record of body camera video for 15 to 40 percent of officers dispatched. The audit also found, in many cases, officers did not record the entire incident, as required.

The report also revealed officers did not begin recording while driving to the call in 30% of the footage that was reviewed.

There was some good news that came out of the audit. Less than 5% of videos were miscategorized and 98% of videos were kept as long as required and not deleted too soon.

For critical incident videos, like officer-involved shootings, SDPD released videos within 10 days. California law says the videos have to be released within 45 days.

The police department has agreed to all seven recommendations made in the audit.

“The one thing that clearly shows, not only that we should do better but, that we’re going to do better,” says Police Chief David Nisleit. “I want to talk about where we are in the process with the recommendations. They have been placed into our procedure, that as we speak is going through the routing process for signatures, to include my own signature. I expect that to be done within the next 30 calendar days.”

Nisleit says there were some concerns about the body cameras recording each incident. He says they are working to create a policy for victims who request not to be recorded. This would also include incidents with minors.

Auditors say they will be presenting the report to the entire city council on Monday.