Once again the Las Vegas Police Protective Association union has decided that protecting bad cops is more important than both the safety of its officers, the safety public and even the successful conviction of criminal.
After the recent release of a video depicting Henderson police officers hold down, punch and kick and man in a diabetic coma, community members have begun to ask why the largest police agency in Southern Nevada does not have similar videos systems installed in its vehicles. The Las Vegas Sun reports that Chris Collins, executive director of the Las Vegas Police Protective Association, adding dash cams or other such video recording equipment would have to be approved buy the Union during future contract negotiations. Collins says the union considers the “Safety equipment.”
Not so, says Clark County Commissioner Steve Sisolak. He promises that were the funds available, he would support immediate installation of dashboard cameras. Sisolak told the Sun, “I don’t understand how equipment would be a negotiated item any more than the type of vehicles or uniforms.”
While the installation of dash cams would capture misconduct like the October 2010 incident where Henderson Sgt. Brett Seekatz is seen kicking Adam Greene in the head repeatedly even though he was clearly subdued by several other officers, Sisilok wisely focuses on what is often a more compelling argument that these devices would be used to protect officers against false accusations and used to help convict criminals.
The truth is dash-cams will accomplish all three goals. Case in point, the recent allegations of Metro officer John Norman could have immediately been verified or disproved had his cruiser been equipped with a dash cam.Norman has been accused if pulling over two women in separate traffic stops and coerced them into showing their breasts. One of the women also claims Norman fondled her breasts as well.
The problem is the LVPPA and the cops it represents don’t care about anything more than avoiding disciplinary or criminal consequences, and since the he said/she said model has served them well, they can only be hurt by dash-cams.