On September 1st, 2021, the DOJ released a press release concerning the implementation of
body-worn cameras by federal agents in some circumstances (see quoted text below). The full
press release can be found here.
In relation to the ATF, the DOJ’s press release states:
Today, the Department of Justice announced the launch of the first phase of its
Body-Worn Camera Program that requires department law enforcement
personnel use body-worn cameras (BWCs) during pre-planned law enforcement
operations. Agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
(ATF) Phoenix and Detroit Field Divisions began using BWCs today during these
. . .
“ATF welcomes the use of body worn cameras by our agents,” said Acting
Director Marvin G. Richardson of the ATF. “The department’s policy reflects ATF’s
commitment to transparency as we work to reduce firearm violence in our
. . .
On June 7 . . . Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco directed the ATF, DEA, FBI
and USMS to develop individualized comprehensive policies that require agents
to wear and activate BWC recording equipment for purposes of recording their
actions during: (1) a pre-planned attempt to serve an arrest warrant or other pre-
planned arrest, including the apprehension of fugitives sought on state and local
warrants; or (2) the execution of a search or seizure warrant or order. Consistent
across each of these policies is a presumption that BWC recordings depicting
conduct resulting in serious bodily injury or death of another will be released as
soon as practical.
Mandatory use of body-worn cameras (“BWC”) by federal agents will potentially have a
profoundly beneficial impact on ensuring accountability, transparency, and fairness for the
firearms industry and general public during their interactions with ATF and other federal law
enforcement agencies. FRAC will continue to monitor this development and post updates as
we learn more details on how this policy rollout will impact ATF.