Rep. Williams to support body camera Bill #47

Rep. Robert Williams, center, held a press conference at the Darlington County Courthouse on Monday, May 18.  Photo by Samantha Lyles

Rep. Robert Williams, center, held a press conference at the Darlington County Courthouse on Monday, May 18.
Photo by Samantha Lyles

By Samantha Lyles, Staff Writer, slyles@newsandpress.net

Community leaders from the fields of law enforcement, government, and social work turned out Monday, May 18 to stand behind SC Rep. Robert Williams (D – House Dist. 62) on the grounds of the Darlington County Courthouse in support of Bill #47, which would require state and local law enforcement officers to wear body cameras. The details of the bill are currently being worked out between the SC House and Senate.

“During the past several months, police departments all over the United States have been under intense scrutiny over the way law enforcement treats black men,” said Williams, citing the April 4 fatal shooting of Walter Scott by a North Charleston police officer as an example of how this problem is hitting close to home.

“That horrible event has brought home to a lot of state leaders that video evidence is just too important to leave to chance,” Williams said.

Chief Danny Watson of the Darlington Police Department said his agency has been using body cameras for six years, and endorsed the devices as a way to “protect the truth” in all interactions between officers and the public.

Dr. Dolores Brown also addressed the issue of child support delinquency – the reason Scott ran from police – and advocated Fatherhood and Families (an agency Rep. Williams founded) as a way to help fathers who are in arrears on their child support payments. Brown said the agency is staging a “Top Ten Fathers” contest to highlight strong parenting examples, and nominations can be made by calling 843-413-2790 or thebestfathers@gmail.com.

Author: Duane Childers

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