In car police cameras have radically altered our understanding of officer safety. In the past two decades, the videos coming from squad cars have made a huge impact on how instructors present training in the academy and have made lasting impressions on the psyche of many a rookie and seasoned cop.
Before the widespread use of video cameras in police cars, trainers had to rely on the involved officers to relay the events. Unfortunately, not all of the officers survived the confrontations to tell what happened. Those law enforcement officers who were successful still suffered from perceptual narrowing and other effects of the incident, which prevented them from always giving a clear picture of the incident.
As I have mentioned in other articles, the dash cam video of South Carolina State Trooper Mark Coates murder made a significant impact on how I looked at law enforcement, and how I handled myself on the road. Likewise, videos showing the murders of Nacogdoches County (TX) Constable Darrell Lunsford and Laurens County (GA) Deputy Sheriff Kyle Dinkheller also changed me forever. These videos, and many more, changed how many trainers taught traffic stops and the use of force.