Residents Begin Wearing Body Cameras to Accurately Report Suspicious Activity

Reporting crime or suspicious activity on Stapleton social media sites has always been a tricky situation. What do you report? How should I describe the potential perpetrators? Should I describe everyone as white to avoid being accused of being racist? These are all tough questions, as many times do-good residents trying to alert people to a situation end up being ambushed after making a post. “I have been on the Stapleton Community Watch site for a long time,” said resident Jon Youde. “I have seen so many times where people are trying to be helpful, but ultimately are accused of being racist or elitist. But in actuality, a crime was occurring. It’s a really tough situation.” Paul Lima has seen similar issues. “When you post an item about suspicious activity, you have to be really careful,” said Lima. “You have to really be careful in your descriptors even if you are absolutely just describing what you are seeing. One wrong adjective and you get rung up as a racist pretty quick.” Because of the backlash those who post activity often receive, posters have begun a new trend. “Instead of posting the specifics of the situation, I simply post the actual event,” said Keith Hickey who now wears a body camera at all times when in Stapleton. “I will post the suspicious video, and simply say, ‘decide for yourselves.’” Many other residents are following suit. “It has really worked out well,” said body camera wearer Maria Beatty. “Now, I can get the information to everyone quickly without having to stress about political correctness or being called a racist. It’s really been great.” The body cameras have also served as vindication for those who have been questioned in the past. “Now when I post things, there will sometimes be comments like, ‘oh, that’s what you were talking about. Yes, that is suspicious,’” said Beatty. At least 15 different people have posted suspicious videos and that trend seems to be increasing. “When I tell people that I wear one, I can tell some people think I’m crazy,” said Hickey. “But others ask where I got it and how effective it has been. I think it could ward off potential attackers even.” Be careful when hanging out in the hood. You never know who could be recording your actions.]]>

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