Dallas police announce policy to quickly release video

DALLAS (AP) — Dallas police have announced a policy to release videos of police shootings and other incidents in which someone dies or is badly injured within three days, although it's unclear whether this will lead to the prompt release of footage in all such cases.

City police previously released body and dash camera videos on a case-by-case basis, and the department routinely withholds footage it says is exempt from Texas public records law as part of an “ongoing investigation.”

The policy announced Tuesday evening gives the police chief discretion over releasing videos. A spokesman did not answer questions about whether footage will be made public if its part of a criminal probe.

The change in how Dallas police handle video of shootings and in-custody deaths follows other departments taking similar steps in the wake of mass protests sparked by the killing of George Floyd, who died after a Minneapolis police officer held his knee on Floyd’s neck for several minutes.

Since 2013, American police have widely adopted body cameras. But some departments' resistance to releasing video of critical incidents has led some to question whether the tens of millions of dollars spent on the technology has provided the accountability and transparency expected.

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