Ohio needs uniform rules for body cameras

Use of body cameras by law enforcement officers and deputies in Ohio is increasing and will continue to do so. It makes sense for the state to have at least limited rules for them.

A bill being considered by legislators would require that any agency using body cameras have a written policy on their use and provide training to officers. That is a good start, but it would allow a mishmash of different rules throughout the state.

Lawmakers should consider a uniform set of standards for body cameras used by police and sheriff’s departments. Standards should not be overly restrictive, creating new budget and management headaches. But some uniformity – on, say, release of body camera tapes to the public – would be a good idea.

Uniform rules enforced statewide could provide more protection to both law enforcement officers and the public – certainly a worthy goal for Buckeye State legislators.