Cooper: ‘What we’re lacking is a leader at the top’

By Kate Elizabeth Queram
Greensboro News & Record

GREENSBORO — A state law restricting access to police body-camera footage needs to be changed to allow greater transparency, N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper said Tuesday.

“There is an assumption in this new law that cameras and film are confidential and that only a court order can allow it to be public,” Cooper said during an interview with the News & Record’s editorial board. “I believe the presumption should be that the video is public.”

The law, which took effect Oct. 1, reclassifies dashboard and body-camera footage as confidential personnel records. Only people pictured or heard in the footage — or their relatives — are allowed access to the video. Members of the public, as well as journalists, must obtain a court order to view it.

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