Independent monitor’s report says Denver officers not turning on body cameras in many cases

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DENVER -- Police and independent monitor are at odds over whether Denver officers are using body cameras the way they're supposed to use them. Last year, the department approved body cameras for officers to wear on the job.

Denver police gave 102 officers who patrol downtown body cameras that can capture every incident they come in contact with. It was a pilot program that Denver Police Chief Robert White wants to expand.

But a new report by the independent monitor says in most cases he reviewed, Denver officers are not turning on the body cameras when they use force against a citizen. The report indicates a lot of kinks need to be worked out for the program.

But the police department says the monitor is looking at cases that were not part of the body cam pilot project. And the department's numbers show that out of 53 use of force cases, only seven involved issues with body cameras.

Police also point out the program is new, and everyone is still learning how to use the body cameras.

The department also says financially, technically and legally it's not possible to have the body cams on all of the time.

A third party is helping them evaluate their data to come up with new policies where necessary.