Darlington official supports police body cameras - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Darlington official supports police body cameras

DARLINGTON COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - State legislators are again tackling the issue of requiring South Carolina police officers wear body cameras.

For hours, members of a senate subcommittee wrestled with unsettled details, all surrounding the idea to require all police agencies in South Carolina to use body cameras Wednesday.

Bill on police body cameras revived in the State House

Darlington County Sheriff Wayne Byrd wasted no time announcing where he stands on the issue.

The following statement was issued by Byrd:

I support proposed legislation that would equip all law enforcement officers in the state with body cameras and protect the rights of bystanders to videotape and/or photograph law enforcement officers.

The body camera bill, proposed by Legislative Black Caucus, would offer greater protection and more accountability to both suspects and law enforcement officers. We rely on the public's help and support to do our job. I am in favor of anything that helps us continue to build trust with the citizens of Darlington County while ensuring greater openness and transparency.

Senator Malloy's bill, protecting the rights of bystanders who photograph law enforcement officers, is an important measure that will eliminate some of the tension that can arise during an arrest, traffic stop or other interaction between the public and law enforcement. He has added an important provision, which I also support, that would penalize bystanders who interfere or obstruct officers from performing their jobs. Our deputies work hard to do their jobs with honor, professionalism and integrity. We have nothing to hide and nothing to fear from interested bystanders and concerned citizens.

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