OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. – One of the lawyers representing the family of the man who was killed when two Osceola County deputies opened fire in the parking lot of a Target is questioning why none of the responding members of law enforcement were wearing body cameras.
Mark Nejame is working on the behalf of 20-year-old Jayden Baez’s family.
“There were no bodycams on,” Nejame. said “What we’ve heard is an excuse for that. ‘Well it’s tactical training,’ Well if it’s tactical training you should have your body cams on.”
On Wednesday, Sheriff Marcos Lopez revealed more details on how his office responded.
In a statement, Lopez said deputies were training nearby, and when they arrived none of the initial deputies, “were equipped with body cameras.”
The sheriff still hasn’t said what specifically prompted his deputies to open fire, only that it happened as they were trying to apprehend people suspected of shoplifting from Target a short time earlier.
“If the sheriff’s office is saying they have full transparency, then show us your cards,” Nejame said.
Questions remain as to whether deputies were required to wear their body cameras when responding to that scene.
News 6 searched for Osceola County’s body camera policy online, but it was not available there.
News 6 has emailed the Sheriff’s Office for a copy but has not yet heard back. This story will be updated if the office responds to our requests.
Other local law enforcement agencies’ policies were available online.
Orlando police, in their policy, stated all members assigned body-worn cameras who are in uniform and engaged in law enforcement-related activity, including overtime, are required to wear and use their body worm camera, including if they were dispatched or if the activity was self-initiated.
It stated they must activate their body cams prior to arriving on scene, with a few exceptions like undercover agents making a planned arrest or during a search warrant.
The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office body cam policy is available online as well, though the sheriff’s office said, “There is no policy requiring body cam activation during specific types of training.”
The Seminole County Sheriff’s Office released its policies and said their deputies aren’t required to wear cameras during tactical training situations.
Read the other sheriff’s office of police department policies by clicking here.