Video surveillance cameras play an important role in criminal investigations. These cameras are in many locations, public and private, and proliferating in new places. For example,
Given the prevalence of video surveillance cameras, it’s possible that should you ever face criminal charges (for any of a variety of crimes), camera footage may serve as evidence against you.
If prosecutors do try to use footage in your case, what are some important points to consider?
- The footage may not show beyond a shadow of a doubt that it’s you perpetrating the crime. For instance, the footage may be low in quality, or it may fail to catch you at an angle that clearly reveals your identity. Someone resembling you could be confused for you.
- Maybe the footage doesn’t even show a crime. What it depicts could be vague and subject to multiple interpretations.
- Has someone tampered with the camera? Sometimes footage gets doctored, with parts of it removed entirely or edited in ways that can work against you unfairly.
- The footage may contradict other pieces of evidence, such as witness testimony or what other people have recorded on their phones.
Don’t hesitate to contact a reputable criminal attorney. Evidence used against you in your criminal case has to meet high standards and must undergo thorough review and questioning. When it comes to video surveillance cameras, there are multiple ways in which the footage may not be as reliable or revealing as you would assume.