Columbus Dispatch: A recent Ohio appeals-court ruling that cruiser dash-camera videos are confidential “investigatory materials,” rather than open public records, threatens Ohioans’ ability to monitor police and defend against abuse.
This decision is no favor to law-enforcement officers, either. They often rely upon these videos to prove they behaved professionally and even heroically under difficult circumstances.
For these reasons, police agencies would be wise to promptly comply with requests to turn over these videos — which have been regarded in practice as a public record — and to ignore a single court’s opinion as overreach.
Police and other public officials should remember that hiding public records undermines public trust.