Custodial Interview Video Laws Are Catching Fire!

Recently, we have seen major growth with the use of electronic video recording for custodial interviews. The latest state to adopt a new law is our own Colorado. In June 2016, a bipartisan bill was passed requiring Felony 1, 2 and Felony Sexual Assault interviews to be video recorded.

That brings the total number of states with custodial interview recording laws up to 24. According to an ongoing research project assembled by Thomas P. Sullivan of the Jenner and Bock Law Firm titled “Compendium: Electronic Recording of Custodial Interrogations,” most states go through a number of revisions once a law is passed.

The Compendium includes a list of 17 benefits of video recording as well as the history and latest status of every US state and some international data regarding the latest laws. You can find the compendium here or contact CaseCracker to get specific information about your state. Here is a brief introduction to the Compendium: Electronic Recording of Custodial Interrogations project from the NACDL website:

We are seeing growth not only on the state level, but the federal level as well. In July 2015, the FBI reversed its position on interview recording and now recommends recording interviews.

With all of this major growth, The Innocence Project has also produced a best practices article entitled “Implementing Electronic Recording of Custodial Interviews: A Primer for Law Enforcement” which surveyed agencies that record interviews about their experiences. This article provides not only best practices but a section on recommendations for types of equipment and funding options.

As the article states below, recording of custodial interviews is a growing movement and benefits law enforcement agencies and communities alike.

“Twenty-first century policing requires law enforcement to effectively reduce crime, while establishing trust and legitimacy with the communities they serve. Electronic recording of custodial interviews can help law enforcement meet these demands by providing an irrefutable account of what transpired during a critical interaction between police and suspects.

The practice can prevent false confessions and substantiate authentic ones—increasing overall public confidence in the justice system.

There is a growing national movement to electronically record custodial interviews. Currently, 18 states and the District of Columbia have mandated the practice either by statute (CT, IL, MD, MI, MO, MT, NE, NM, NC, OR, VT, WI) or court action (AK, IN, MA, ME, MN, NJ).

In another four states the vast majority of law enforcement agencies have voluntarily implemented the practice (AZ, HI, UT, RI). In addition, hundreds of individual jurisdictions throughout the country have adopted electronic recording of interviews on their own.”

To read the full article on “Implementing Electronic Recording of Custodial Interviews,” please visit the PDF link here.

If you would like more information on laws or our interview recording solution, please contact us!