Policy change: Ring Doorbell camera company shuts door on police
"Technology is a two-edged sword."
WEST POINT, Miss. (WCBI) – Ring cameras have captured unbelievable moments you just had to see
And they’ve also helped solve crimes when no one else was around to tell the story.
West Point Police Chief Avery Cook said Ring cameras have helped solve the majority of his cases.
“If I had to put a number to it, I’d say 75 to 80%,” said Cook.
Now, Ring said law enforcement can no longer request footage from their app unless it is an emergency.
Public safety officials will now have to get a subpoena for footage that may be evidence.
“Depending on what day or night it is. If it’s nighttime, have to go the station, type up a subpoena, go find a judge, go get a judge up out of bed, go to his office, and he has to read over it to make sure we have all the pertinent information in it, and then sign it and then we get that information,” said Cook.
But not immediately.
More steps still have to be taken to legally obtain the footage the police would have otherwise obtained almost immediately.
Clay County Sheriff Eddie Scott explained that even after the subpoena has been signed, it still has to be sent to the home company.
“This home company may be in New York. It may be in Texas. So again, by the time this information gets there, they process it and get it back to us, you’re talking bout possibly weeks or months,” said Scott.
Scott said this delay gives criminals an advantage.
“If we could readily access this information, we could get criminals off the street quicker and prevent them from committing more crimes, because again, typically what we see: once they commit a crime, they’re gonna continue committing crimes until they’re brought to justice,” said Scott.
Both agencies said the lengthy process delays their investigations, but it doesn’t stop them from doing their jobs.