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Videotaping Police Interrogations

The author of Have Opinion, Will Travel, offers a succint - and persuasive - argument in favor of videotaping police interrogations.

Back in my prosecution days (a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away), I convinced the largest police department in my jurisdiction to spend some federal money on equipping all the interrogation rooms with hidden cameras and microphones and videotaping all interrogations. Despite a lot of misgivings about it by a lot of police officers, the results were fantastic. Juries got to see defendants before they got cleaned up for trial trying to talk their way out of whatever they were accused of. Detectives looked professional because they knew they were on tape so they were always on their best professional behavior. Defense attorneys liked it, not just because it prevented police misconduct in the interrogation, but also because it was a lot easier to get their client to take the plea offer when they could play a videotape of their client sinking his own ship.

Read the full post here.

UPDATE: Alaskablawg offers more reasons - and some interesting stories - to record police conversations.