South Bend, Indiana Mayor and 2020 Democratic candidate Pete Buttigieg on Tuesday requested the city's police chief to issue an order reaffirming the city's police department's policy on body cameras. According to a release pertaining to the general order, the policy requires authorities to "activate their body cameras during all work-related interactions with civilians."
The decision comes days after 53-year-old Eric Logan, an African American man, was shot and killed by a white police officer on Saturday. The officer, South Bend Police Sgt. Ryan O'Neill, alleged Logan approached him with a knife, CBS South Bend affiliate WSBT reports.
Officials later found O'Neill did not activate his body camera during the encounter. Authorities claim the camera wasn't on because the squad car O'Neill arrived in did not have its emergency lights on; both are part of an inter-connected system that includes the vehicle's dashboard camera.
Buttigieg issued a statement urging officials to "acknowledge the hurt and honor the humanity of all involved in this loss of life" experienced by the community. He also called for greater transparency.
"For years, our community has been working to strengthen trust between residents and officers through community engagement, technologies like body-worn cameras, transparency with police information and other measures," Buttigieg said. "This work must continue with more urgency than ever as we move forward together in the wake of the hurt caused by what took place on Sunday."
South Bend instituted cameras in 2018. The town's police chief, Scott Ruszkowski, issued an order Tuesday that all officers should activate their body cameras, according to WSBT.
Buttigieg, whoon Monday and canceled several fundraisers, is expected to address the shooting during a Board of Public Safety swearing-in ceremony Wednesday.