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    Body Worn Camera

    In March, 2017, the Lynchburg Police Department fully implemented the “Body Worn Camera” (BWC) program and in conjunction with that program, the Commonwealth Attorney’s Office had adopted the position of “Body Worn Camera Assistant” to act as a liaison between the two agencies. The BWC Assistant transfers & reviews videos involving arrests by Lynchburg Police Officers, looking for, and documenting, any evidence of crimes that were committed, and forwarding this evidence to the Prosecuting Attorneys, to help bolster these cases and increase the number of convictions in Court. The BWC Assistant also provides copies of videos to Defense Attorneys when requested, performing audio and visual redactions when necessary, to protect personal information, innocent bystanders, victims, etc from being exposed.

    The AXON (formerly TASER) company provided the body cameras for the LPD and officers were fully trained in their use before being deployed. LPD currently employs 150 BWC cameras, as well as the ability to capture InCar/DashCam videos and photographs.

    Given the current climate, public support for police body cameras is at its highest. A Cato/YouGov national survey found that 92 percent of Americans support requiring police officers to wear body cameras that record video of their interactions, and 55 percent would be willing to pay higher taxes to outfit their local police department with these devices. The results of wearing body cameras are just as positive and have been proven to decrease police use of force, the number of DUI cases, court overtime, external and false complaints, and response to resistance. Body cameras also increase cost savings for agencies, enhance public trust and create safer communities at a lower cost.

    During the last couple of years, the Department of Justice has also increased its support to further assist law enforcement in the implementation of body-worn camera programs by providing additional funding to agencies. Looking forward, state legislators are working to quickly refine the legal framework surrounding body-worn cameras to both enhance transparency and help safeguard the privacy of people captured on camera, including children, witnesses and bystanders.

    The benefits of sharing body camera data with prosecutors have been clear. For example, in DUI cases with video, attorneys identified the footage as an important factor in the resolution of the case. The body camera provides a secure chain of custody for uploading, storing and transferring all this digital evidence through Cloud-based software and technology. Police Officers are also issued, and are able to use, cellphones for taking still photos at crime scenes and uploading these photos to the case files through this program as well using the AXON apps. LPD currently utilizes BWC, InCar/DashCam, & Photo programs to record and store this information for criminal prosecution.

    Beginning in the Fall of 2019, the Commonwealth of Virginia began requiring the collection and reporting of data concerning the Body Worn Camera (BWC) Program. This information is available here:
     2019    2020   2021

    BWC in the News: BWC part 1  BWC part 2

    Electronic Discovery Release Forms


    Contact information

    Tom Adams, Body Worn Camera Assistant               

    (434) 455-3763

    (434) 846-5038 (FAX)

    tadams@ocalynchburg.com


     


    Defense Attorney & Pro Se Instructions For Obtaining Body Worn Camera Videos & Documents

    Effective Immediately:

    Electronic Discovery for minor offenses, such as Infractions and "non-jailable" Misdemeanors, are NOT available through this Office, ONLY offenses that carry the possibility of jail time will filled, unless the Infraction or "non-jailable" Misdemeanor is part of a case that has charges that do carry jail time. The request for BWC and documents related to those minor cases can be requested through FOIA procedures to the Lynchburg Police Department at foialpd@lynchburgva.gov or via U.S. Mail/Email to:

    Lynchburg Police Department FOIA Request
    Professional Standards Division
    905 Court Street Lynchburg, VA  24505
    Monday - Friday  8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.  
    Telephone: (434) 455-6052
    Fax: (434) 455-0638
    E-mail: professionalstandards@lynchburgva.gov

    For any other agency where the reports and evidence originate (ex. Liberty University Police Department, Virginia State Police, Blue Ridge Regional, etc), those agencies must be contacted directly.
     

    For "Jailable" Requests, please follow the below procedures: 

    For obtaining the “Electronic Discovery Release Form” (EDRF) (after prior submission of a Motion for Discovery Order) for the release of Body Worn Camera (BWC) video(s), Photos, InCar/DashCam videos and Digitized Documents:

    You will need to have a PDF Reader software program installed on your computer in order to use these forms. Go to PDF Reader Programs for Windows & Mac to find the software you require.

    DO NOT attempt to fill out these forms online, they MUST be DOWNLOADED to your computer FIRST. After downloading and being "saved", open the form to fill it out.

    1. This all-in-one form has been revised to cover the Rules of Evidence for ALL Courts
    2. Download the form as needed.
    3. Using the downloaded, fillable PDF form, fill in all the information you have available, except for the “OCA BWC USE ONLY” box in the lower left-hand corner of the form. Your "signature" is computer generated.

    "Left Click" on the link to open the PDF form, then click on the "Download" icon in the upper right hand corner

    This form is available for download for Defense Attorneys:

    This form is available for download for Pro Se (Self-Representation) cases:

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    FOR PRO-SE ONLY:

    This Pro Se form MUST be filled out completely. A valid PHOTO ID MUST accompany the request either in person at our Office, or a copy provided in the U.S. Mail/Email along with the completed form.

    U.S. Mail or In-Person delivery address:                                                 For email submission:
    Office of The Commonwealth's Attorney                                              tadams@ocalynchburg.com
    901 Church Street

    Lynchburg, VA 24504
    ATTN: BWC Assistant                                                                        Pro-Se: 
    Please read through the BWC Program FAQ & Instructions                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 by clicking here:
                                                                                                                                       BWC FAQ, Rules, & Instructions Pro-Se

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    FOR DEFENSE ATTORNEYS ONLY:

    Once the form has been completely filled out, click on one of the two colorized buttons at the bottom of the form to perform your next task:

    SUBMIT via EMAIL- tadams@ocalynchburg.comwhich will send the form to your email account (which needs to be set up to be directed to an account you want to use) to be emailed to the BWC Office.

    *SUBMITTING VIA EMAIL IS THE PREFERRED METHOD TO USE*

    Please read through the BWC Program FAQ & Instructions by clicking here:

    BWC Program FAQ & Instructions Defense Attorneys

    PRINT & FAX to 434-847-5038 – which will send the form to your printer to print. You can then fax the form through your computer directly to a computer-based fax or sent manually. Please note: If you fax your request, you MUST supply an email address associated with your Evidence.com account that can be used for sending video links as well as further communication(s). Faxed copies are not always received in a clear copy, which is why email is preferred.