Justine Damond: ‘Why did the police not use their cameras?’

Questions are being raised by officials about why a police officer who shot an Australian woman, and his partner, did not record the fatal incident.

Justine Damond, 40, was gunned down on Saturday after calling police to report a possible crime in her quiet Minneapolis neighbourhood.

State investigators say the officers whom she encountered failed to activate their body or dashboard cameras.
Every police officer and squad car in Minneapolis is equipped with cameras.

“I have the same questions everyone else does. Why weren’t the police cameras on?” said Mayor Betsy Hodges.
Minneapolis police are required to switch on their body cameras only during certain encounters, unlike in Los Angeles or Washington DC, where cameras must be switched on for any response to a call for service.

Instead, there are more than a dozen situations in which cameras should be used, according to the police manual, which adds that failure to use the camera could result in job termination.

“If a BWC [body-worn camera] is not activated prior to a use of force, it shall be activated as soon as it is safe to do so,” reads the manual.

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