The Wyoming House Of Representatives gave initial support to a bill Wednesday that limits when the public can view footage recorded by police body cameras. The House also amended Senate File 32, to remove dashboard cameras from the bill. A person or the media could view the recordings if they were able to convince a judge there was compelling public interest in releasing the video.
Supporters of the bill say its intent is to provide clarity to law enforcement and the general public and give parameters and guidance on the handling of policy body footage.
Sundance Representative Tyler Lindholm said current Wyoming law does not address how police body camera video should be handled.
"The question was asked, how are agencies currently handling the situation, and some of the testimony received on how some of the agencies are currently handling it is a scattershot in a shotgun blast," said Lindholm. "Lots of those agencies are currently handling as in everything’s public. So if an officer in some of these municipalities is wearing a body cam and enters into a private home, that’s public record."
Opponents of the bill say framework may be needed for how to handle footage, but ultimately the bill will block transparency.
The bill be debated two more times.