In a victory for local law enforcement, a Greensboro attorney appears to have succeeded in convincing the City Council to not force law enforcement to use consent forms for every search.
The Greensboro mayor, introduced a substitute motion, called informed documented consent, which passed. The motion provided for body worn camera to continue to be used, but now requires the officer to provide a statement that the interaction is voluntary. Meaning the person can walk away. Second, the officer must provide a statement that they have a right to refuse the search. Third, the officer must let the person know that they have a right to withdraw their consent at any time. Our lawyers in Greensboro will be interested to see how this new policy works in the real world.
Also, body worn camera would have to be kept as part of this new policy change. Our criminal attorneys in Greensboro have seen a lot of changes through the years with reference to body worn cameras and consent to search issues. One thing that really should be addressed is the ability of officers to turn their cameras off. A lot of body worn camera video that we watch is stopped and then started again missing key details of an arrest or search.
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