The chief of the Vernon Hills (IL) Police Department says he will end the use of body cameras by his officers if a news police reform bill is signed into law by the governor.

Chief Patrick Kreis says the legislation could make officers criminally responsible if their cameras fail to record an incident.

“This bill includes brand-new language, called the law enforcement misconduct, which defines that an officer who fails to comply with any part of the Body-Worn Camera Act – state law – they are per se committing a Class 3 felony,” Kreis told CBS Chicago. “Never before have I seen a case where a law is passed that criminalizes the act of violating a department policy.”

The chief said if for any reason the officer’s camera stops recording under this state law, the liability falls back on the officer to prove it wasn’t intentional.

The law also requires that officers wear cameras. Kreiss says that mandate does not take effect for another four years and he hopes the law changes by then.

 

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