The changing face of technology is constantly altering the world as we know it–and thanks to a new deployment of specialized smart to police officers in New York City, the world may change all over again. Now, thanks to this new technology, police officers might not have to physically attend court at one of the Traffic Violations Bureau in order to testify against traffic offenders and in other minor matters. Instead, they would testify via Skype or Facetime. This has a number of implications for motorists.
Man Hours Spared
Anyone who has ever been to court over a traffic citation knows full well that there can be a lot of waiting around. It is frustrating for motorists who are forced to spend their day in court, but police officers are equally frustrated. Now, traffic court can take mere minutes out of the officer’s day, rather than requiring them to spend time traveling and waiting. As a result, those man hours can be dedicated to other, more important tasks.
Reduce Inadequate Staffing Concerns
Police departments across the nation are struggling to keep their departments adequately staffed and all of the city’s needs handled. When an officer is sent to traffic court, it is usually during their scheduled shift time — and that means one less officer on the streets. While keeping officers from wasting hours in traffic court will not answer all the manpower issues, each officer who is able to attend traffic court via Skype or Facetime returns some manpower back to the City.
Of course there are questions as to whether this allows the defendant to adequately confront the accuser. It is difficult to detect if the officer is sweating, or breathing heavily. And how does the defendant review the officer’s notes?
On the other hand, it would seem that there is a question of equity. What’s good for the goose should be good for the gander. Why should the defendant have to appear in person?
As always, thanks for reading my posts and providing your insightful comments. This blog is better due to your engagement.