Twitter for Police Accountability

Posted: July 3, 2011 in Uncategorized

Twitter is a social media tool that has been used by protesters around the world for resisting police and government oppression. Copwatch organizations have also used twitter as a way to encourage people to hold the police accountable and document the police presence around them.

Using a Copwatch Twitter feed is also a good way to get information about the situations you are watching somewhere away from you so the police can’t silence you. When engaging in Copwatch, video, pictures, and notes are typically being taken by the observers. We record information like police license plate numbers, car number, names, and code (badge) numbers. Sometimes the police refuse to identify themselves when you ask, and so then we record descriptions of the cops. If you observe the police committing an act of brutality or misconduct, they might want to take away any evidence you have of that. By texting that information to @rvacopwatch on twitter, you are taking it out of your hands and out of their hands.

While you’re on your phone, you can use the camera to record video of the situation. If you don’t have the ability to text message or to use twitter, you can also document on paper what you see going on (time, location, number of cop cars, license plates, car numbers, cop names, cop code (badge) numbers, etc.) and email it to sbhcopwatch @gmail.com, call 804 303 5449, or come by 2005 Barton Avenue to share that information. We also have incident report sheets available for people to use for recording important information.

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