High School Students Develop App To Document Police Brutality
In the past few weeks, police brutality has become, seemingly, the biggest concern for American citizens across the country. To change the dynamic between law enforcement and communities, Caleb Christian, a 14-year-old Georgia high school freshman created an app that will allow citizens to rate and leave reviews of their police districts. Named Five-O, Christian along with his two sisters programmed the app so citizens can input details of every interaction they have with the police officers they encounter.
For Harriet reports, the app allows for citizens to rate individual police officers based on their professionalism. The app review allows for “citizens to store the details of each encounter with law enforcement; this provides convenient access to critical information needed for legal action or commendation.”
Christian’s older sister, Ima who is a high school senior told PineTartInc:
“We’d like to know which regions in the US provide horrible law enforcement services as well as highlight the agencies that are highly rated by their citizens. In addition to putting more power into the hands of citizens when interacting with law enforcement, we believe that highly rated police departments should be used as models for those that fail at providing quality law enforcement services.”
Christian’s 15-year-old sister, Asha also confirmed: “We expect that all parents will want this app for themselves and their kids. We hope it will be one of the must have apps on your mobile devices. Our goal is to make the app available to anyone, anywhere in the United States.” The Five-O app is currently in its Alpha testing stage but will be available to the public on August 18, 2014. The app will be available for both Andriod and IOS devices.
Below is a promotion video for the Five-O app.
In an equally hi-tech move, there are some who say police officers should be required to wear cameras to monitor their treatment of the public they’re meant to serve. The sight in Ferguson, MO of local police armed to the teeth, dressed like soldiers and tossing people in jail — peaceful protesters and journalists among them — has people questioning how police officers think they should conduct themselves when they engage with citizens.
One city in California, Rialto, is already doing this, outfitting officers with a $900 camera. The study that ensued found that complaints against police officers fell by 88 percent once the cameras were in place and the “use of force” fell by 59 percent. Both the officers and the public behaved better knowing their behavior were being documented. However there are questions of cost (for large cities, the price tag could go into the millions), privacy and even the results of the study.
Additional contribution by Tonya Garcia