CCTV and the Law
Homeowners who install video surveillance cameras that view the sidewalk and street surrounding their residence should be aware of by-laws that restrict where those cameras can be pointed. The Hamilton Spectator recently reported that its city council has decided to keep its by-law that prohibits Hamilton homeowners from pointing security cameras at the street.
In a recent Ontario case, the Court saw a video of an accused setting on fire his neighbour’s (i.e. the victim’s) truck.
Years ago, I wrote about a British case where a video of shop theft was accidentally erased by the investigating (police) officers. However, the prosecutor was still able to obtain a conviction based on the testimony of the officers who viewed the video prior to its erasure.1 A similar thing happened in a recent Alberta case (2) where a Provincial Court Judge admitted the evidence of a police officer about what he saw on a video that was erased prior to trial.
There is an alternative to litigation for resolving conflicts and disputes. It is called mediation.
A few months ago, I wrote about dashboard cameras and their increasing popularity with the general public in Canada and elsewhere.
Recent events have prompted some police forces to use wearable video cameras, also known as body-worn video (BWV) cameras, to record the interactions between police officers and the public.
Forensic investigators now have a new tool to use to document crime, accident, and fire scenes — the 3D laser scanner.
Ever wish that your car was equipped with a video camera to record the licence plate of the car that cut you off, or did some other equally unsafe manoeuvre? Thanks to modern technology, you can now mount a camera on your car’s dashboard and record whatever is on the road.
In April 2013, the world was shocked by terrorist bombings near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Hundreds of video images were recorded by security (surveillance) cameras, television news cameras, and cell phone cameras. These images showed not only the explosions and resulting damage, but also the two brothers who allegedly planted the bombs. Video images of the suspects, travelling to and from the scenes of the two bombings, were widely shown and helped identify them.
A few issues ago, I wrote about the R. v. Manley case in which a police search of Manley’s cell phone, after his arrest for a series of break-ins, was deemed lawful.
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