If you've followed the news at all in the past week and a half, you've seen the disturbing violence in Ferguson, Missouri. It all started with the shooting of an unarmed 18-year-old by a Ferguson police officer. The police department maintains that the shooting was justified, but witnesses claim the opposite.
The incident sparked a powder keg of violence, protests and days of conflict between law enforcement and outraged citizens. There's no way of knowing whether conclusive video evidence of what happened that fateful day would have changed how events unfolded, but there's a chance it could have defused the entire situation.
In the near future, Ferguson police will have video evidence every time.
Yesterday, Ferguson's police department announced it intends to outfit all its officers with personal video recording devices worn on their chests. Much like the dash cams mounted in almost every police cruiser, these cameras could provide definitive evidence of wrongdoing or innocence of both officer and citizen. But more than that, just the presence of these cameras could deescalate tensions between them.