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Contagious Accountability: A Global Multisite Randomized Controlled Trial on the Effect of Police Bo


Ariel et al. (2016)


Results from a global, multisite randomized controlled trial on whether body-worn camera use reduces citizens’ complaints towards the police.


Police officers who were randomly assigned to the treatment condition were required to wear a body camera during their shift.


Police officers assigned to the control condition were not required to wear a body camera during their shift.


1) The number of complaints lodged against the police dropped in the post-treatment period from 1.20 to 0.08 complaints per officer, marking an overall reduction of 93% in the incidence of complaints when police wore body cameras.

2) No difference between post-treatment group and control group on police complaints. These results can also be read as a no-differences in the odds of a complaint lodged against officers during a treatment shift, compared with the odds of a complaint filed during a control shift.


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