Describe how social media, body cameras and dash cameras are altering the safety and professionalism of criminal justice professionals
Technology and innovation now play a major role within the criminal justice system. Its permeation within this sphere now means that it is capable of altering the safety and professionalism of criminal justice specialists. Although social media has been hailed globally as a novel innovation, it is a double-edged sword with far-reaching consequences. The advent of smartphone technology and the internet now allows citizens to record their encounters with law enforcement officers during routine stops (White & Malm, 2020).
This allows them to record real-time video of their interaction while making sure that the officer is made fully aware of this fact ensuring that all their actions are within legal bounds. On the other hand, individuals may also make recordings with malicious intent, posting them online and painting the officer in question in negative light. In such a scenario, the public may know little about the facts surrounding the case and proceed to openly castigate the officer. Such bias is now common across the United States and may, inadvertently, turn the public against law enforcement officers and even jeopardize their safety. Enraged motorists have been known to record traffic police during routine stops and even going as far as posting their name, badge number and address online. Such behavior complicates police work and may even put their lives in danger.
Correspondingly, body worn cameras (BWCs) and dash cameras are capable of affecting criminal justice professionals while on duty. These devices were initially introduced to hold suspects and law enforcement officers accountable for their actions (Moriarty, 2017). Generally, police officers have been known to apply the rules of professional conduct when their BWCs and dash cameras are turned on to provide appropriate evidence before a court of law. Major precincts across the United States are currently employing this technology to uphold standards of the criminal justice system and the integrity of officers.