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Essential Concepts and Principles for the Use of Video Evidence for Public Safety and Criminal Justice

By Martino Jerian, CEO and Founder, Amped Software


Videos and photos permeate many aspects of our society. Different studies have shown that video evidence is one of the most important and powerful sources of information for investigators, analysts, and judges. Despite its importance, it is often not treated as rigorously as other forms of scientific evidence, such as DNA and fingerprints. Video is one of the main tools to understand the dynamics of an event and identify its perpetrators but working with it in the right way - and correctly interpreting it - is not as easy as it seems.

The purpose of this document is to outline some very important principles that all the stakeholders of a public safety organisation and the criminal justice system should be aware of to get the best results during investigations, grant a fair and transparent trial, and minimize the risk of a miscarriage of justice through improper use of image and video evidence.

The principles we are outlining in this document should be already well-known and understood by forensic analysts and technicians. However, a large amount of video evidence is handled locally by first responders and investigators, who may lack the competency and technical foundations to work with such evidence and correctly deliver it to the legal system.

"The incorrect handling of videos and images can have huge implications for our safety and security, from missing important details during police operations to following a wrong path during investigations, causing costly mistakes that could lead to crucial evidence being dismissed in court or condemning the wrong person."

Knowing and following these basic principles will lead to a more secure public environment, fair and correct trials, and a quicker, more efficient, and less costly justice system.

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Amped Software - Video Evidence Principles
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