OFFICER SAFETY – Beware of this ACLU phone app. Potentially dangerous for officers and the end-user citizen. Just picture that you are in a stressful and high-police encounter with a violent, resisting subject and are surrounded by agitated citizens. You are already concerned for your safety. Then you see a citizen near you suddenly reach into his pocket…..Is he/she pulling out a phone; or a gun? You have a tenth of a second to make a life and death decision….what will YOU do? What are the unintended consequences of using this phone app? A lot rides on your decision.
The new ACLU phone app actually alerts and encourages people to go to the scenes of officer encounters with subjects to record the incident. This recklessly endangers both officers and the public. Remember the recent incidents in Baltimore, NYC, Chicago, Detroit, LA and other cities where citizens surrounded officers attempting to take resistant subjects into custody and the enraged citizens harassed, assaulted and even attempted to lynch suspects away from police?
Even though the door could swing both ways in documenting police/citizen encounters and uses of force; do we need MORE of this type of reckless behavior from citizens interfering with police actions?
Although the ACLU advises citizens to warn police before they suddenly pull their phones from their pockets to record; how many emotionally captured citizens would follow that instruction? How many officers would be so distracted by the stressful circumstances to even hear them; or believe them when they do?
This is yet another self-serving idea by attorneys more intent upon generating more business for themselves; rather than any valid search for “justice.” Yet one more stressor for LEOs out there.
BTW, I would advise against downloading this app to test it. Once you download the app, it has the ability to IMMEDIATELY download all of your contact information, photos, videos, etc. directly to the ACLU’s database.
Be safe; not stupid!