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Police Commission seeks input on body cameras

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Police Commission has retained the Policing Project at New York University School of Law to gather public input into a new policy regarding the release of body-worn camera video.

The Policing Project will be working with professors and students at UCLA’s and UC Irvine’s schools of law to compile the public input and report back to the commission, officials said.

The Police Commission has provided three ways to give input on this hot-button issue. People can go to www.lapdvideo.org and fill out a questionnaire in either English or Spanish. They can also upload detailed comments at that site on what they believe the new policy should be, or provide public testimony at one of the community forums scheduled for this month.

The first forum was held April 12, at Seoul Recreation Center in Koreatown.

Other forums are at 6:30 p.m. April 20 at ONE Generation Senior Enrichment Center, 18255 Victory Blvd., Reseda; and from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. April 22 at the Pico House, 424 N. Main St., downtown.

There will also be a public forum in the LAPD’s South Bureau area on May 3 at 6:30 p.m., but that location has not yet been announced.

All comments must be delivered to the Police Commission by May 7.

The City Council enacted a $59 million plan last June to equip more than 7,000 patrol officers with body cameras by the end of this year. As of March 22, 2,794 cameras have been deployed, according to officials.

The use of body cameras has become a prominent issue as the focus on police shootings has grown nationally, and the LAPD has said it hopes the cameras will help build more public trust in the department.

But while it is seeking to build trust, the department has been criticized by some for not releasing the videos publicly except in response to a court order.

To fill out the questionnaire, visit  www.LAPDVideoPolicy.org.