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Nov. 19, 2017
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Minutes for SB92 - Committee on Judiciary

Short Title

Requiring certain custodial interrogations to be videotaped.

Minutes Content for Tue, Feb 7, 2017

Jenna Moyer gave a brief on SB 92 saying that it is a bill with new language that would require law enforcement agencies to establish policies requiring electronic recording of certain custodial interrogations. She gave details about the policies that are adopted by this bill, and concluded that this also defines relevant terms.

Proponents:

Ed Klumpp shared his support (Attachment 1) of SB 92 by saying first that he and a group of individuals and organizations including some of the written proponents, the Judicial Council, and the Kansas County and District Attorney's Association, that worked together to offer this legislation. Mr. Klumpp suggested an amendment to clarify recording is required when a defendant elects to make or sign a written statement during the course of a custodial interrogation "when the interrogation concerns homicides and felony sex offenses."  He concluded by saying this bill is good because it addresses concerns.

Question and answer period dealt with a variety of issues such as: the current capability of video interrogations, amending the bill to include cell phone recordings, maintaining storage of videos, and cost to adding equipment. The Fiscal Note was referenced by Chairperson Lynn in relation to the cost, though it was mentioned that many agencies already have the equipment referenced in the bill.

Kim Parker testified (Attachment 2) in support of SB 92 saying first, that there was much collaboration that happened in order to make this bill possible. Then, Ms. Parker said that the bill is beneficial to both a defendant and law enforcement officers. She continued that larger law enforcement jurisdictions have been already recording interrogations. Ms. Parker concluded that the cost should not be a problem with the smaller jurisdictions.

Chairperson Lynn asked the Committee to review written testimony in support of the bill, provided by Laura Nordgren (Attachment 3), Jennifer Roth (Attachment 4),  and several others.

Michelle Feldman, who submitted written testimony (Attachment 5), asked to address the Committee, reiterating cooperation of multiple agencies that came together to create this legislation. She stressed her support for SB 92 saying that false confessions are a leading cause for wrongful convictions nationally, and has effected at least two cases in Kansas. She said that recording interrogations provide a complete and irrefutable account of what occurred, which enhances transparency and accuracy. She explained that this is good for the criminal justice system.

After a brief question and answer period, Alice Craig, who submitted written testimony (Attachment 6), was also permitted to speak to the Committee. She shared her support for the bill. Floyd Bledsoe, who also submitted written testimony (Attachment 7), was permitted to address the Committee. He said that because his interrogation was not recorded, it cost him 16 years in prison. He asked the Committee to support SB 92 so that others would not have to pay the price he did.

Opponent:

Amanda Stanley testified (Attachment 8) in opposition to SB 92 saying that technical language is the issue, and that the bill seems to leave an open interpretation.  She agreed that Ed Klumpp's amendment would change her position to proponent.

Seeing no questions, Chairperson Lynn closed the hearing.