August 5, 2015 |
Philadelphia suburb Deptford Township has the wrong perspective on New Jersey's effort to equip all state troopers and police officers with body cameras, which local officials criticize as an unfunded mandate. Body cameras are fast on their way to becoming as ubiquitous as guns and body armor in police departments. While a number of high-profile recent cases have shown that cameras can create valuable records of police misconduct, they can also protect officers from false allegations.
August 3, 2015 |
With clamor to equip police with cameras growing - last week, New Jersey officials announced a program to equip all state troopers with body cameras and pressed local departments to do the same - one South Jersey township is raising a difficult question: Who'll pay for them? Deptford Township has brought its funding concerns to a little-known state board, arguing that a recently enacted law requiring dashboard cameras in all newly acquired police cruisers will burden its taxpayers.
July 30, 2015 |
The New Jersey State Police will spend $1.5 million to acquire 1,000 body cameras for troopers, Gov. Christie's office said Tuesday while also announcing new guidelines aimed at expanding disclosures about investigations of officers' use of force. While state police cruisers have had dashboard cameras for years, this will be the first time troopers will wear cameras. The equipment is expected to be rolled out during the next few months, with all troopers on patrol getting the gear by the middle of next year.
July 29, 2015 |
Local Twitter mayhem "Orange Is the New Black" and "Hemlock Grove" star Madeline Brewer , who hails from nearby Pitman, N.J., stopped by WXPN's XPoNential outdoor music fest Sunday evening. From the audience, she took to social media to express her enthusiasm for headliner Grace Potter . But she experienced a bit of confusion when she put a call on Twitter for "bubbles," and instead got fans thinking she wanted drugs. To clarify, she was looking for champagne.
July 10, 2015 |
The National Transportation Safety Board on Wednesday urged Amtrak to install "crash- and fire-protected inward- and outward-facing audio and image recorders" on all locomotives. The recommendation came in response to the May 12 derailment of Amtrak Train 188 in Port Richmond that killed eight passengers and injured 200. Amtrak CEO Joseph Boardman said last month that Amtrak would install inward-facing video cameras in all of its 300 locomotives, starting with 70 Siemens locomotives now being put into service on the Northeast Corridor.
June 10, 2015 |
AT FIRST, the commotion in front of the old police district's front walls attracted some stares. Then drivers pulled over and started taking pictures with their phones. Some marched up to police officers who were standing around and peppered them with questions. And then the damnedest thing happened: People started smiling. Laughing. Might even have done a little clapping, too. Velvet ropes, a red carpet and balloons hugged the entrance to Olney's 35th District headquarters — in honor of a movie night for dozens of excited local kids.
June 10, 2015 |
THE DEATH OF Philadelphia college student Shane Montgomery, who went missing after a night of drinking in November and whose body was pulled from the frigid Schuylkill more than a month later, has spurred introduction of legislation that would require bars and restaurants to install outside surveillance cameras. City Council's Committee on Public Safety yesterday began taking testimony on the feasibility of such a law, but does not expect to take action until the fall so that all stakeholders can weigh in, said Councilman Curtis Jones Jr., who sponsored the bill.
June 10, 2015 |
What started as a push to have Philadelphia bars install exterior surveillance cameras on Monday became a broader debate about mandating cameras elsewhere, including all parking garages. The suggestion that garages be required to have cameras was made to City Council by the lawyer for a woman who was beaten and raped in a Center City garage on New Year's Day. "Regrettably, common sense has not been sufficient to convince the parking garages - some of them at least - to go forward and have video surveillance in all areas of public access," Shanin Specter told Council.
May 30, 2015 |
Betsy Bassel caught a shoplifter in her Old City vintage store nearly as soon as it opened a year ago. A teenage girl had tried to make off with a leather vest from Scout Salvage on Second Street. Bassel got the vest back, but worried about more thefts. Threats of calling the police didn't seem to work. But, she thought, shame might. "The worst-case scenario for me at that age would have been for my friends to know what I'd done," Bassel said, laughing. The store's approach to deterring shoplifters - warning, on signs posted around the store, that would-be thieves would have their photos posted to Instagram - worked for the better part of a year.
May 28, 2015 |
AMTRAK PLANS to install internal cameras on its trains in the Northeast Corridor, allowing them to monitor train engineers, the corporation announced yesterday. The new safety measure follows the May 12 derailment of Amtrak Train 188, which left eight passengers dead and about 200 injured. An investigation led by the National Transportation Safety Board concluded that the train sped up from 70 to 102 mph as it approached a curve near Frankford Junction. A wide-angle camera will be added to each locomotive's cab, focusing on the engineer and the control console, Amtrak Spokesman Craig Schulz said.