The Effects of Body-Worn Cameras (BWCs) on Police and Citizen Outcomes

A State-of-the-Art Review

Published in: Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, Volume 40, Issue 4 (2017), Pages 672-688

Posted on RAND.org on November 27, 2018

by Jon Maskaly, Christopher Donner, Wesley G. Jennings, Barak Ariel, Alex Sutherland

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Purpose

The purpose of this study is to review the extant of the published literature on bodyworn cameras (BWCs) in policing, specifically in the context of how BWCs effect both citizens and officers.

Design/Methodology/Approach

The current study is a narrative review of the impact of BWCs on police and citizens generated through a search of four repositories (Google Scholar, Criminal Justice Abstracts, EBSCO Host, PsychInfo).

Findings

The current narrative review identified 21 articles that matched the selection criteria. In general, this body of research demonstrates that: (a) the police are supportive of BWC adoption; (b) the evidence from BWC evaluations suggests that the use of BWCs can have benefits for police-public encounters.

Practical Implications

The practical implications derived from this narrative review suggest to police administrators that the adoption and effective implementation of BWCs are one mechanism that can strengthen police-community relationships and decrease police misconduct through enhanced legitimacy and accountability.

Originality/Value

This study is useful for researchers who wish to further examine BWC issues in policing, for police managers/administrators who are currently utilizing BWC technology, and for those who are considering adopting BWC technology.

Research conducted by

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