Thanks to the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona, there is now a cellphone app that lets you record video of law enforcement activity and right away submit it to the local ACLU for review—just in case someone's rights may have been violated.
Nearly 40 people have been killed by police so far this year in the state, according to the ACLU of Arizona. Also, the organization constantly gets reports of excessive use of force by police and Border Patrol agents, so this app is "intended to serve as a check on abusive behavior by police officers, sheriff’s deputies, and Border Patrol agents by allowing ordinary citizens to record and document any interaction with law enforcement," says a statement to the media by Will Gaona, policy director of the ACLU of Arizona.
With Mobile Justice AZ, you can record and report interactions with law enforcement. It also has educational information on individual rights. The videos captured can be sent to the ACLU of Arizona and are preserved even if the user's phone is later seized or destroyed, the press release says.
The functions of the app include:
Record allows individuals to capture exchanges with police officers and other law enforcement officials in a file that is automatically sent to the ACLU of Arizona.
Witness sends out an alert to anyone with the app, giving the location of a police encounter that is being documented by another app user.Report allows the user to complete a written incident report and send it directly to the ACLU of Arizona for review.
Know Your Rights provides an overview of what rights protect you when you are stopped by law enforcement officers.
While Mobile Justice AZ is intended for use by bystanders, the ACLU of Arizona recognizes that some users may want to use it while they are involved in a police encounter.
Anyone interacting with law enforcement should announce that they are reaching for a phone, and that they are attempting to access the app to record the exchange. Users’ safety depends on their ability to clearly communicate any actions they take and remain calm.
Mobile Justice AZ is available for use on Android and iOS phones and can be downloaded free through Apple’s App Store or Google Play," the ACLU of Arizona press release says.
The same app is also launching in Minnesota, Georgia, Maryland, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington, D.C. And the app is already in use in Michigan, Mississippi, Nebraska, California, Colorado, Missouri, North Carolina and Oregon. New York has the ACLU’s original app to record police, known as the Stop and Frisk app, the press release says.
Download it for iPhone (iOS) here
Download it for Android here