Washington House passes bill on police body cameras

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — The state House of Representatives has passed a bill that seeks to restrict broad requests for police body-camera videos while also keeping essential footage available to the public.

The measure passed 61-36 Monday, following a debate over whether it does enough to ensure both police accountability and the privacy of people who wind up on the recordings. It sets rules on what body-camera footage can be requested as a public record, requires police agencies that use the cameras to adopt policies, and sets up a task force to examine best practices for their use.

The bill would limit broad requests for copies of the videos by requiring that the requester provide the name of a person involved in the incident; the date, time and location of the incident or the case number. With a few exceptions, it would also require the requester to pay the cost of redacting the videos.