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CS/HB 305 — Law Enforcement Body Cameras

by Judiciary Committee and Rep. Harrison and others (CS/CS/SB 624 by Judiciary Committee; Criminal Justice Committee; and Senators Steube and Young)

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Criminal Justice Committee (CJ)

The bill (Chapter 2017-15, L.O.F.) requires law enforcement agencies that use body cameras to specify in their body camera policies and procedures the instances in which a law enforcement officer may review the body camera footage.

Section 943.1718, F.S., currently requires a law enforcement agency using body cameras to record an incident to establish policies and procedures on their use. However, Florida law does not require agencies to use body cameras or address whether a law enforcement officer may review body camera footage prior to writing a report or making a statement about a recorded incident.

The bill authorizes a law enforcement officer using a body camera to review the body camera footage before:

  • Writing a report; or
  • Providing a statement regarding an event arising within the scope of his or her official duties.

However, the authorization to review body camera footage does not apply to an officer’s inherent duty to immediately disclose information necessary to secure an active crime scene or to identify suspects or witnesses.

These provisions were approved by the Governor and take effect July 1, 2017.

Vote: Senate 38-0; House 116-0