Police body cameras can dramatically reduce the number of complaints against officers, research suggests. The Cambridge University study showed complaints by members of the public against officers fell by 93% over 12 months compared with the year before.
Almost 2,000 officers across four UK forces and two US police departments were monitored for the project. Dr Barak Ariel, who led the research, said no other policing measure had led to such “radical” changes.
The study aimed to find out if the use of cameras, which are usually clipped to the top half of an officer’s uniform, affected complaints against police made by the public.
Scotland Yard’s diversity chief has admitted that black men are more likely to receive worse treatment than white counterparts and that the Met continues to blight the careers of its own ethnic minority staff by racially discriminating against them.
Victor Olisa warned that the Met’s longstanding failings on race were damaging its legitimacy, and its ability to police by consent.
“My view is that on occasions we work on stereotypes and that stereotypes of black men being more aggressive, more confrontational, is a stereotype that plays on some officers’ minds and that can lead to a different level of policing style and force being used on a black suspect than it probably would do otherwise,” Olisa told The Guardian.
Sharmila Ullah was taken into police custody in July 2014 after being arrested for shoplifting. The 30-year-old, of Fourth Avenue, was admitted to Walsall Manor Hospital from Bloxwich Police Station after suffering abdominal pain and vomiting.
The mother, known as Millie, was returned to her cell the following morning where a doctor certified her as fit to be detained. But shortly after 11.50am on July 10 she was found unresponsive and pronounced dead at hospital less than an hour later.