New Jersey police car videos deemed public records

AP News
Posted: Oct 13, 2014 5:00 PM

TOMS RIVER, N.J. (AP) — A New Jersey judge has determined videos routinely captured by cameras mounted in police cars during traffic stops and other law enforcement activities in the state are public records.

The recent decision handed down by state Superior Court Judge Vincent Grasso means authorities cannot withhold the videos, even if they say they pertain to criminal or internal-affairs investigations.

The judge's decision involved rulings he made in two similar but separate cases. Both matters involved people who made Open Public Records Act requests for videos of specific traffic stops.

The judge ruled if police agencies require the regular recording of law enforcement activities, the videos qualify as government records and cannot be shielded if they later become parts of investigations.

The Ocean County prosecutor's office said Friday it plans to appeal the rulings.