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When Will Body Worn Cameras Record Community Members
Body worn cameras will be activated on calls for service and activities including traffic stops, pursuits, investigating suspicious people and vehicles, domestic violence incidents, use of force, verbal confrontations, DUI investigations, crimes in progress, offenses involving weapons, and mental health contacts and welfare checks. The body worn cameras will begin their audio recordings 30 seconds before the cameras are activated for recording.
While there is no way to give a comprehensive answer for every scenario, here are a few policies to consider:
More specific examples include:
Do I have to Give Consent to be Recorded?
As members of the public may be aware, Washington State is a two/all-party consent state when it comes to recordings. However, Washington State law provides that recordings of an emergency nature, such as the reporting of a fire, medical emergency, crime or disaster” do not require all-party consent.
Also, all-party consent may be obtained when one party announces to all parties that communications are about to be recorded or transmitted and the announcement that the communication is about to recorded is, also, recorded.
The City of Duvall follows all the requirements of the Secretary of the State of Washington retention schedules for how videos will be stored, retained, released and deleted. Recordings shall be retained for a period consistent with the law and in no event for a period less than 60 days.
It is the City’s general understanding that if an incident is captured on a Body Worn Camera, the City must retain the recording until such time as any litigation or criminal prosecution has been resolved and the appeals process exhausted. Once the matter is resolved and there can be no further appeals, the camera footage can be destroyed.
Disclosure of Records
The City understands that community members may have serious concerns regarding the disclosure of any recordings that are legally required to be retained by the City. RCW 42.56.050 details when disclosure of body worn camera recordings are presumed to be “highly offensive to a reasonable person” and, therefore are exempt from public disclosure. Those circumstances include, but may not be limited to:
Requests for Records
A request for body worn camera records may be made by any member of the public and must: (1) specifically identify a name of a person or persons involved in the incident; (2) provide the incident or case number; (3) provide the date, time and location of the incident or incidents; or (4) identify a law enforcement officer involved in the incident.
Individual members of the public who were not directly involved in the incident (or their attorney) do not have the automatic right to unedited footage. Therefore, the Duvall Police Department may charge the individual member of the public reasonable costs for redacting the video consistent with the public records act and privacy concerns.
Others have a specifically defined right, under RCW 42.56.240(14(e) to make a public records request for unedited/unredacted body worn camera footage. Those groups are:
The information in this “Frequently Asked Questions” does not constitute the provision of legal advice and is for explanatory purposes only. If an individual member of the community has a question regarding a specific situation or application of any rule or procedure to a specific case, the City of Duvall encourages the public to seek their own legal guidance on that topic or issue.
1. Evidence in a criminal case2. Safekeeping3. Found Property
Property is released only to the legal owner and by appointment only. If your property is being held as evidence in a criminal case, approval from the Prosecuting Attorney must be given before releasing the property back to the owner. To make an appointment to pick up property, please call the Property Clerk at 425-788-1519.