Thursday, November 12, 2015

Left and right agree: Investigators should release Yantis killing video

America’s political left and right agree: Idaho State Police investigators must release video accounts of two Adams County Sheriff’s Deputies shooting and killing Council rancher Jack Yantis — if footage exists. Today, American Civil Liberties Union and the Cato Institute experts told that police have a moral and legal duty to make the videos public if the devices worn by the deputies captured the killing. Chad Marlow, Advocacy and Policy Council for the ACLU, said if police block the release of any video it undermines the public’s trust in law enforcement. “The entire purpose behind [body cameras] .. is because they are helpful in increasing police transparency and accountability,” Marlow said. Adams County Sheriff Ryan Zollman told a local newspaper his deputies wore body cameras during the Nov. 1 confrontation with Yantis, but didn’t say whether the devices captured the incident. Matthew Feeney, a Cato Institute policy analyst, suggested police release the footage to any interested parties after a public records request, but also offered room for a compromise. In an email Feeney stated, “At the very least I think that the rancher’s next of kin should be able to view the body camera footage.” Marlow agreed, “It’s a basic human right to know what led to the demise of a family member.”...more

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