City Auditor To Examine How SPD Handles Police Car Videos

As attorneys for the city prepare to defend the Seattle Police Dempartment in two lawsuits over cop car videos, the city auditor is now examining how the police department is handling videos.

The city auditor’s office is drafting a plan for a “systematic review of procedures,” according to Deputy City Auditor Mary Denzel, and will examine whether officers are properly recording and archiving videos from patrol cars.

The audit comes at the request of city council member Nick Licata, who, in 2010, asked the auditor’s office to look at how SPD handles their videos after a man arrested during a “urban golf” pub crawl on Capitol Hill in 2009 later found SPD had failed to turn over exonerating videos recorded by patrol car cameras.

The audit is still in the planning stages as the city has concerns over whether the audit will infringe on the current city contract with SPD—which has strict guidelines for reviewing in-car video—or interfere with a Department of Justice investigation into SPD’s practices.