To increase protections for New Jersey communities and police officers, legislation to statutorily require and regulate police body cameras were approved by the Assembly on Monday.
The Assembly passed A-4271, sponsored by Assembly members Cleopatra Tucker (D-Essex), and Herb Conaway (D-Burlington), 53-15-6; and A-4312, sponsored by Assemblywomen Verlina Reynolds-Jackson (D-Mercer, Middlesex), Shavonda Sumter (D-Bergen, Passaic), and Cleopatra Tucker), 64-4-6.
The sponsors issued the following joint statement on their measures:
“Police body cameras have become an essential part of community policing today. They aim to ensure accountability for any actions which take place during a police stop, whether it is by the officer or a resident.
“Tensions surrounding community policing escalated after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. The distrust between communities of color and law enforcement is once again highlighted in the national spotlight. A body camera is only one way of ensuring greater transparency and accountability for law enforcement, and to rebuilding community relations; however, it can be a uniquely powerful tool in getting there.”
The bill A-4271 received passage in both houses and will now go to the Governor for further consideration.