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  • #16
    Originally posted by haus409
    True, but that would take a ****load of those mini-tapes, even if you rotated them out every month or two.
    What I usually do if I feel a stop warrants recording, is I'll sit on it for a few weeks. If no complaint is made, I'll just re use the tape. If I'm recording a coversation during an investigation, I just turn it in to evidence.

    I know AtlCop said there's that law about "offical" recordings- but if I'm paying for the recorder and tapes out of my own pocket, I don't look at them as "official".
    Last edited by Centurion44; 07-19-2005, 03:38 PM.
    You have no right to not be offended.-Neal Boortz

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Centurion44
      Another word of caution: If you use a digital recording and something comes up in trial (be it civil or criminal) and it was recorded on your digital recorder, the defense can theorhetically subpoena your device as it was the "orginal" document of recording. If you save the recording on your personal computer, that could be subpoenaed as well.

      My advice is to use a mini tape recorder. That way if the original document gets subpoenaed, all you have to surrender is the tape.

      That, and those digital things were too much of a pain in the *** for me.
      Do they get too look at all my porn on my harddrive?!

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      • #18
        Originally posted by GrayW4442
        Do they get too look at all my porn on my harddrive?!
        If you store any potential evidence on your computer for any length of time, then yes, it could be subject to subpoena. That's why I'm very careful not to put anything on my desktop at home.
        You have no right to not be offended.-Neal Boortz

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        • #19
          Now I am interested in purchasing a digital recording device. I have a couple of questions though:
          What is a good one to buy? And where can I buy it? I would like one with a USB attachment to file it in my computer. Or can it be scanned to a disk?
          Does it have a microphone I can attach to the outside of my shirt?
          How far does the microphone pick up? How is the wind affect the recording?

          I bought one from Target some time ago - around 70 bucks, and the thing would not pick up sound if you yelled into it.

          I am a new officer and want to protect myself and my partners if a whacko tries to file a complaint.

          I am a licensed Peace Officer in the State of Minnesota...
          We intimidate those who intimidate others.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Medici
            Now I am interested in purchasing a digital recording device. I have a couple of questions though:
            What is a good one to buy? And where can I buy it? I would like one with a USB attachment to file it in my computer. Or can it be scanned to a disk?
            Does it have a microphone I can attach to the outside of my shirt?
            How far does the microphone pick up? How is the wind affect the recording?

            I bought one from Target some time ago - around 70 bucks, and the thing would not pick up sound if you yelled into it.

            I am a new officer and want to protect myself and my partners if a whacko tries to file a complaint.

            I am a licensed Peace Officer in the State of Minnesota...
            I've got an Olympus recorder. Its about mid range in cost. It records about 2hrs worth of before I have to download it. It does come with a USB cable to transfer to your computer. It also has an external mic. I don't use it though. I have found it works just fine in my shirt pocket. I can stand at the passenger window of a car and easily record the driver. It does pick up some background noise but I think everything will.
            Cowboys in town. Trouble expected.

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            • #21
              I've heard of officers...

              I have heard of a few officers that have successfully sued the complaintant for deprivation of character (or something like that) for up to 5,000 bucks in smal claims. They only do it when the person is outright lying about the situation. I don't know how I feel about that, but part of me is proud of those officers for striking back... afterall, if a cop's character/integrity is hurt, it will have a direct effect on the officer's career in the courtroom.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by SPM
                I have heard of a few officers that have successfully sued the complaintant for deprivation of character (or something like that) for up to 5,000 bucks in smal claims. They only do it when the person is outright lying about the situation. I don't know how I feel about that, but part of me is proud of those officers for striking back... afterall, if a cop's character/integrity is hurt, it will have a direct effect on the officer's career in the courtroom.
                I looked into that when I got a complaint since I had pictures and an audio recording of the stop. In CA we can no longer file a civil suit against people who file a false complaint. However the legislature did enact a misdemeanor criminal section to counter the higher courts decision, so now we can file a criminal complaint for making a knowingly false complaint. Its just getting your dept to buy off on filing the criminal charges. It was a pretty hot topic when I looked into it and unless its changed in the last year or so I still think thats the latest ruling.
                Cowboys in town. Trouble expected.

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                • #23
                  Digital recorders are great to try to deter people from making false complaints. In FL it is against the law to make a false complaint. Falls under the same statute as filing a false police report. Therefore, if someone does so they can be charged with a misdemeanor. However this is where the politics come in. My old chief would NOT allow us to arrest, or even file an out of custody P/C for this. He felt that if we started arresting people for this that it would deter people who had legitimate complaints from coming forward. A bunch of crap if you ask me. People need to know that if they decide to come in and make a BS complaint b/c they did not like the way they were spoken to, or they did not like the outcome of the situation that they are going to get charged. If you go to McDonalds and do not like the way you are spoken to by the cashier, or your order is wrong and you complain, no bid deal... they fix it and perhaps tell the person to be a bit more friendly, end of story. If Jane Q Citizen comes in and says that she did not like the way you spoke to her, or that you were flirtatious with her, it could be the end of your job by the time all is said and done, and people know this. False complaint should equal a set of matching bracelets, regardless of the politics involved.
                  In law enforcement, the customer is ALWAYS wrong.

                  In God we trust. Everyone else is run through NCIC.

                  Sometimes there is justice. Sometimes there is just us.

                  I'd rather be tried by 12 then carried by 6.


                  The opinions given in my posts do not necessarily reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only.

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                  • #24
                    What is the legality of it!

                    What does the case law say on this. Has it ever been deemed unconstitutional that anyone knows of.

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                    • #25
                      No problems that I know of. It's my understanding that police contact is public record. Every message you send through your car computer will be given to the public if requested. I dont' see any expectation of privacy when you are talking to LE.

                      I usa an Olympus WS-200 stores up to 55 hours, and plugs directly into the USB port, no adapter, drivers or softare needed. Plays on MS Media Player.
                      Last edited by Rally; 08-20-2005, 02:50 AM.

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                      • #26
                        We have camera's in our partol cars and we wear body mics.It has saved my butt a few times. On the other hand it has had me in trouble. It's policy that it is recording when we make contact with the public or while in pursuit. If you get into a pursuit or resisting and forget to activate your mic or camera, you get repremanded. I recently got in trouble because I dropped an "F" bomb while foot chasing an armed robbery suspect. He car jacked a vehicle bailed after the vehicle pursuit and left his ride rolling so it hit a few parked cars. When i caught him, he was wearing latex gloves. I think sometimes the cameras are to police us not save us.

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                        • #27
                          I just dont turn my camera on, but i never herad of them being s strict about if you forget to turn it on. lol We are only human and will forget to turn on the mic and camera.

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                          • #28
                            It can be bad officer safety sometimes. when its trained in your head to think about activating a mic before you respond to whats going on around you. Not saying they are a bad idea, but they should be realistic about it aswell.

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                            • #29
                              On the flip side.... I encountered a MS-13 member a couple of weeks ago. While patting him down for weapons, I found a MP3 player in his pants pocket. I didn't think much of it and put it back. I eventually arrested him and took him back to the station for processing. Dept. of Corrections does not take any electronic equipment as personal property, so we take custody of it and put it into our property. While I'm looking for a serial number and such on the MP3, I notice that it is recording. I went back and listened to what was recorded. He started recording about 30 sec. before I encountered him and went up until I stopped it. You could hear our conversation clearly as well as conversations between officers after I had it in my possession. He knew he was gonna be arrested and was using it as a "training tool" for when he got out. This is pretty much just for FYI.

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                              • #30
                                Also, don't forget that MP3 players are just computer storage devices with earphones. They'll obviously hold music and other sound recordings, but they'll also hold any data that you can store on a computer. If you come across someone with one of these that also might be holding computer-generated evidence (kiddie porn, contact lists, etc.), consider trying to hold onto it as evidence until it can be properly examined by a forensic computer tech. If you try to examine it yourself without the proper tools, you can alter or destroy the evidence.
                                Tim Dees, now writing as a plain old forum member, his superpowers lost to an encounter with gold kryptonite.

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