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Policing the Police: The Copwatch Movement

8306 ratings | 531978 views
The killing of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, MO in 2014, galvanized a renewed public interest in the concept of citizen policing, but for David Whitt, Michael Brown’s neighbor at the time, it was the moment he decided his community needed a full-time force of people policing the police. Whitt, a father of four and an electrician by trade, has since dedicated his life to working with Copwatch - an activist organization that works to create a consistent and sustained system of citizen police monitoring with cameras or other recording devices as a way to prevent police brutality. Whitt still patrols his neighborhood where police and citizen interactions are frequent, collecting hours upon hours of video documentation in the hopes that this can prevent another Michael Brown. Click here to subscribe to VICE: http://bit.ly/Subscribe-to-VICE Check out our full video catalog: http://bit.ly/VICE-Videos Videos, daily editorial and more: http://vice.com More videos from the VICE network: https://www.fb.com/vicevideo Click here to get the best of VICE daily: http://bit.ly/1SquZ6v Like VICE on Facebook: http://fb.com/vice Follow VICE on Twitter: http://twitter.com/vice Follow us on Instagram: http://instagram.com/vice Download VICE on iOS: http://apple.co/28Vgmqz Download VICE on Android: http://bit.ly/28S8Et0
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Text Comments (2803)
Terry Knows (3 days ago)
1,500 people are killed by police every year . About have were innocent . Thousands of kids are raped by police every year . Dozens of children under 10 are gunned down by police every year . over 100 elderly citizens over 70 years old every year have been beaten to death by police unlawfully . Over 10,000 police officer a year commit a felony or criminal offense every year . Talk about TERRORIST you have them working right here in this Country wearing badges
TheLordAncient (7 days ago)
Mike Brown: Robs a store Also Mike Brown:*gets killed by cops for running away* Black community: >:-O He wuz a good boi, he dinndu nuffin'!
Tyler Kruse (4 hours ago)
Sooo you’re saying someone accused of commiting petty larceny should be gunned down in the street without a fair trial?
infinity and beyond (8 days ago)
someone need to throw a bunch of grenade into a crowd of cops😂🤣😁😎
TheLordAncient (7 days ago)
and you should be hanged
Emiliano Quiroga (9 days ago)
Yall sweat this a new thing. The show "Cops" has been around forever and "live PD" is another one. Yall just playing victim. Next.
Ed (10 days ago)
US police issues has become a very important topic. MY police video receive millions of views and comments...
Elijah 314 (12 days ago)
6:52 Part of the reason why that may be is because Ferguson has a very high crime rate
Andrew Grell (13 days ago)
Body cams
lewy Bee (17 days ago)
Awesome guys ❤
Dayle Hope Goalkeeper (23 days ago)
How ignorance is bliss for so many yet frustrating to so few. Though it's the few that fight for best interests of the many. The many still continue to be unaware of the softness of the ground they defiantly stand on, while also asking others to hold their hand
Michael Vo-Chau (25 days ago)
I totally understand and believe in policing the police, but using the Michael Brown case is so illogical because he was not innocent at the time he was shot.
Tony Sweet (1 month ago)
There is an epidemic of police brutality and police misconduct in this country! They operate under the guise of serving and protecting when in actuality they are murderous Revenue Gathering tyrants that harass intimidate assault and kill citizens everyday! If you don't bow down to them they will hit you with false charges like the Despicable immoral scum they have become due to The Thin Blue Line bullshit! The only way to start getting accountability is to always always always exercise your right to film The Police! Always always always film The Police! 54,000 citizens a year hospitalized by POLICE and 1200 citizens a year killed by police and the only way to bring that number down is to always always always film The Police! They use the "in this day in age" bullshit to criminalize constitutionally protected activities! Well I say "in this day and age everybody has a camera and should never hesitate to always always always film The Police! That's the only way to start getting accountability from these cowardly tyrants! They're always crying about officer safety! What about CITIZEN SAFETY????
TRICHOMETRIST (1 month ago)
SWAMPLIFE Jim crow laws and the WarOnDrugs fail Power to the people copparatzi
John A (1 month ago)
Montreal canda is overun by scums in pig uniform. The biggest scums work at ststion 1.
COPWATCH (1 month ago)
Hay man thanks for this
Mo Eckersley (1 month ago)
Wow! Thank you ladies and gentlemen cop watchers!
robert carey (1 month ago)
Cop watch is a great idea but Michael brown was a bad choice Michael was NOT murdered he was a hood rat thug and it was only a matter of time
49Anthonie (1 month ago)
All those pigs that are corrupt are not corrected by the state, conclusion, the State is just as corrupt as those Gestapo pigs so fuck the State that allows this. They are worse than the Mafia is or has been.
Matt Holvey (2 months ago)
Is this a joke ?
Tracey Simmons (2 months ago)
Reminds me of 2pac
akvalues (2 months ago)
THE FACT THAT POLICE SERVICE RECORDS ARE NOT AVAILABLE ONLINE SHOULD BE A MAJOR RED FLAG TO EVERYONE!!!!!
akvalues (2 months ago)
EVERYONE SHOULD WATCH THEM!!!
Lasse Kjølstad (2 months ago)
This wouldnt have been needed if they did their job honestly!! Its always them against us!!
Nicholas Grange (2 months ago)
The reporter looks like Donald Glover and James Harden had a kid
Judy Goldthorpe (2 months ago)
maybe you think its about money but its way deeper than that Rick Bart you have to be wiped off face of the planet in neck of kin movie in the real incase you thought everone loved you and you wer portant
Judy Goldthorpe (2 months ago)
more than that Rick Bart when you wer talking with nancy acepcion on the phone which one was it? even if you met in person which one was it? they was makin funya
Judy Goldthorpe (2 months ago)
Dear c op watch how do you explain human remains in the roots of tree at university shool spoke an wa relating to Rick Bart usta be sheriff and he has enemies believe or no believe infact hes in the next of kin movie in the real whether he likes it or not his udder reltives put into sidewall of cenex gas station jusk dung the road in the fast furious competition they became plaques in the wall its top secret biogerm and demolitions naw Bart could question teachers at the universty shool but theyre super geniuses in the geniuos competition with hi fluten jobs theyre outa picion and you would never guess they had stuff to do with stuff including murder of Pete Shivalski ray session in troy alabama genocide hole unda the plow wiff green gangrene poles ans whol lotta you cops maybe you shud watch the terrorists and criminals? Just a th of
TIME DOES NOT EXIST (2 months ago)
The Clintons really hurt the black population. Then if you look at the most corrupt areas they are all long ran by Democrats. You point this out and the neighborhood will fight you tooth and nail.
Jennifer Moore (2 months ago)
I'm a white woman, and I don't trust cops, either! I support this in ALL communities.
sprinklez (2 months ago)
Wow vice at least tell the truth. Is this why your channel is a fail.
Poor dirt farmer (2 months ago)
We all need to do this
Landin Coker (3 months ago)
All I’m saying is yes police brutality happens but not as much as you think. And also people need to learn their rights and learn to also just stfu. I’ve seen way to many videos when police are detaining people and the crowd around him or her starts chanting bs and things go downhill from there.
Eriko. Oy (3 months ago)
Police profiling and brutality is definitely a thing, but everything has intent behind it. You gotta admit; gangs are more prevalent in minority communities than white ones. Like it or not, it's true. That's many times the only way to survive, is to join a gang, but with a gang comes the criminal activity. This creates a lot of uncertainty because literally, anyone could be a gang member. Then there's also the by-product of the profiling: A black person and a white person will more than likely act very different when confronted by the police, I bet you guess what's the differences... I'm not trying to justify anything, just trying to make people think about why things are how they are. So I would first start to get rid off the gangs, so people don't need them anymore.
I Would Prefer Not To (3 months ago)
cops are class traitors. they exist to keep the working class from revolting and destroying capitalism, which enslaves us.
Evan Adwin (3 months ago)
As someone who is pro-police, I'm mostly a fan of this. Keeping police accountable is great. The only issue I see is them potentially hindering police business. If the police are in a potentially dangerous situation, they could make the situation worse by distracting the police or getting in the way.
milk mon (3 months ago)
My favorite cop watchers, high desert community cop watch, san joaquin valley transparency, james freeman, big nick south florida,
Peter (2 days ago)
Big nick GOAT
eryn (3 months ago)
As someone from stl who watched the community fall apart but then many unite together to protect the community, this makes me so happy that to this day there are people still pushing for cops to be held responsible for their mistakes.
Stanlley Pajdak (3 months ago)
Michael brown was a criminal
Vanilla Thunder (3 months ago)
Here's an idea: join the police force. Change it from the inside. Being a Monday morning quarterback is easy. Doing the job and making tough decisions is not.
Peter Rod (3 months ago)
listen to this video, a young black woman , a mother of a few kids got multiple summons adding to more than $800 Dollars, if that woman don't show up in court to pay that money she becomes a wanted criminal and warrants would be issue. now cops say more than 75% of civilians in this county have warrants. now you know why !!
Peter Rod (3 months ago)
cop watch needs reflective vest or clothing so they could bee seen especially at night. walk up to a blue isis wearing dark clothing and holding a black video camera and you could get shot. just my opinion.
anthony shores (3 months ago)
Great job you guys are doing in helping to keep people safe.....and making police accountable for their actions ...... it seems the police have gotten away with it for too long.... and now they don't like the scales of justice being levelled.... if they carried out their jobs to the law they wouldn't have to worry about anybody or care about anybody videotaping them ?
tachikoma10101011 (3 months ago)
Micheal brown was not just a good boy that didn't dd nuffin...
fucken loser (3 months ago)
dude looks like childish gambino mixed with binging with babish
Kevin Dunleavy (4 months ago)
That's great,keep up the great work.Take a good look at the big picture,the cops don't care what color ,race,or greed you are,they will still F#CK with you.
FiveBurfs (4 months ago)
So at the traffic stop at about 10:00 what would they say if the girl pulled a gun out and started shooting and killing the officer?
PassatMrT (4 months ago)
As a white 41 year old male who considers himself to have had all the benefits of a privileged upbringing which culminated in me being a criminal defense attorney, I FULLY support Cop Watch. To those cops who don't like it. I submit this statement that cops love to use: "If you're not doing anything wrong, then you have nothing to fear by being observed...." Just keep your attention on your investigation, remember your training and do a PROPER, CONSTITUTIONALLY SOUND investigation...
justageneraluser (4 months ago)
Good message. Terrible messenger. Michael Brown was a criminal, cop assaulting, menace. Not a hero. That really devalues this type of conversation.
damien knipl (4 months ago)
The Michael brown guy just robbed a gas station. Then beat the hell out of a cop and tried to take his gun from him. Play stupid game's win stupid prizes. He also didn't have his hands up. Tell the whole story not just a 1 sided story. I'm all for cop watch but don't do a 1 sided story and what only the cops do. Let everyone know what led up to what happened before the camera started rolling.
Richard Thomas (4 months ago)
Would have shot Brown for stealing my cigars .Not just a box of cigars it’s how that store owner feeds his family
Burned Aura (4 months ago)
I agree with the dude driving at 12:22. Might be an unpopular opinion but i think that no cop watcher or civilian should ever interfere with a cop while he's working. It can create tense situations and some might get hurt. Just let the officers do their work and record. No need for some unnecessary commentary that won't help a situation. if they do some fucked up shit, upload the uncut original video on social media.
Fabzil (4 months ago)
One of those copwatch collegue student looks like a undercover cop xD
Ezekiel Goldberg II (4 months ago)
Look at the crime rates in Ferguson, they need a strong Police force. These moron are enabling criminals.
Doug (4 months ago)
Wow. Do these guys have a family and job. Seems like this would take alot of their time.
Domus Clevus (4 months ago)
Why dont cops have streaming bodycams?
MooseT (4 months ago)
Cops aren't the problem. You should follow black males. That would make a much safer America.
Leonel Lomas (4 months ago)
I’m all for filming the cops and putting your foot down and even giving them the middle finger every now and then, but the whole Michael Brown narrative is a bunch of bullshit and I also know that a cop has a right to defend himself as Darren Wilson did that day. Let’s not make this a race case but make it about police accountability.
TrudI Osler (4 months ago)
Bloody brilliant! You are an inspiration to your kids. A real gentleman.
darrel robinson (4 months ago)
Ok these cops are killers with badges it don't matter if u not snitching in those or not that's a cop that can kill u legally and not have any second thoughts about it
Tina liveswell (5 months ago)
Keep up the good work!
Valorene (5 months ago)
Well yeah, if you actually get in the cop's face and act aggressive they're gonna get defensive. It's fine if you observe.
MrBartekG9 (5 months ago)
I lost brain cells watching this. No factual basis on anything. All opinion based.
Layla OBrien (5 months ago)
I don't agree with a lot of VICE videos, but holding law enforcement and your government accountable is a good thing for ALL communities! Great job on this one, VICE.
K'Bella HOOk (5 months ago)
We've been laying down for far too long for nothing. Meaning there's no reason to be afraid if one is held accountable for their actions.
N (5 months ago)
Didn't forensics show Michael Brown was reaching for the cops gun when he had his thumb blown off? (https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/new-evidence-supports-officers-account-of-shooting-in-ferguson/2014/10/22/cf38c7b4-5964-11e4-bd61-346aee66ba29_story.html?utm_term=.1735895b1bb7) And wasn't this just minutes after he attacked a convenience store worker and robbed them? Why do they struggle so much to have a solid example case of police racism if it's so pervasive? Every video they push as an example you see the 'victim' is clearly resisting arrest or reaching for a gun they had (illegally) or reaching for the cops gun.
jrthebody (5 months ago)
🎥 you self and see the stuff human do
jrthebody (5 months ago)
Wow its so simple what you think you don't need cops
jrthebody (5 months ago)
Hey why human check them self
Zachary Schellinger (5 months ago)
I wish more people would pull out cameras when they are witnesses to crime rather than pretend not to see anything. Filming Police is safe physically and politically hence all the back patting comments. If the same zeal were used to keep some insidious neighbors honest perhaps the police presence wouldn’t be needed in St Louis. Communities have agency use it for good and watch what it can accomplish.
coolio diablo (5 months ago)
Such horse crap that "innocent" kid Michael Brown they're trying to make a martyr out of was trying to take the officers gun and that's why he was shot and killed, had he just followed the instructions the cop had said he'd still be alive. The cop was investigated and they found forensic evidence proving everything the cop had said was true. I'm so tired of the black community rallying to arms over criminals getting killed for being dipshit criminals, 99% of these so called Innocents weren't innocent at all, the only one that may of been actually minding his own was Trevon, and it wasn't a cop that killed him...
Scuba Steve (5 months ago)
Typical left wing one sided reporting...
The Man X0 (5 months ago)
Everyone needs to see the entire story..... not just the couple bad cops out there.... they leave out the hundreds of thousands of good cops out here doing thier jobs correctly... they just focus thus on the small few of dirty cops.... How about you guys try doing thier job for a day, week, even a month..... it's alot harder than it looks.....
TacticalboyHD (2 months ago)
There’s thousands of bad cops. A few bad apples is a myth by police unions. Being a cop doesn’t even make it to the top ten deadliest jobs in America. The job isn’t as hard as you think. Believe me. I have a friend who quit the police force.
Stanlley Pajdak (5 months ago)
Brown was a criminal
David Andre (5 months ago)
Doesn't mean he deserved to get killed. Stop trying to justify violence boot-licker =)
Uhh Huh (5 months ago)
This is a healthy way .. but don't make it racial police killings are not racially based .. that myth has been busted .. in 2017 457 white guys were killed by police and 223 black people were killed. In Some of those killings innocent people were killed both blacks and white . Police kiiling innocent people is a problem. It shows a lack in training and competence of officers. The problem is not racial. Let's not make it racial.
MTL- assassin (5 months ago)
thats stupid....everything for content he
Larry Ellivremmus (5 months ago)
Local patrolman and highway patrolman only in four statues of ordinance our organization enforces will all the only law of the land which is the Constitution we are the real police and the real law enforcement officers of this country our position is the highest position recognized in the country to enforce the Constitution and the Patriot Act as Lawn forsmann officers
Larry Ellivremmus (5 months ago)
Until the people create constitutional law enforcement public officials and employees and elected officials will continue to violate their rights well we are constitutional Law Enforcement Officers we arrest all elected officials appointed officials and employees of our government we protect the fan and enforce the Constitution protect defend and enforce the Patriot Act on all opposition against the Constitution or the people of our country known as the Americans our jurisdiction is both state federal and Highway we registered in several States and I here to protect the people legally by incarcerating public officials who violate their rights
Queen K (5 months ago)
We need cop watchers EVERYWHERE in America 💯
Cbegley 84 (5 months ago)
🖕🏻F••• all the bad cops🖕🏻
Nacki (5 months ago)
such an intense look he has when listening.
Skeptic2006 (5 months ago)
I have one question. Who is funding Copwatch? With no funding this will end. Would it be so crazy to have a cameraman to always be with cops like in the show Cops?
Solvaz (5 months ago)
If a cop is making an arrest or whatever and you are close,yea they will look at you and they will tell you to backoff because u become a potential threat to them, when a crowd surrounds u and shouts u all kinds of insults this becomes a threats so yes they will be more aggressive because they have a family too, im not saying all cops are good but most of them are good and honest people, u guys are just civilians u don’t know the whole story so why make a scene out of it because 90% of the time u dont know a dam thing of what is going on,wake up people stop being so hard on our police forces, their the one u call when no one is there to help u, treat them with respect and they will do the same
Kushan Liyanarachchi (5 months ago)
Good cops nothing to fear. Bad cops, they're at risk. The grey cops - those are the evil dudes who try to frame people for their sick fantasies. Kudos for the people who document and work with community and legal system.
Tony Dinh (5 months ago)
Cops are a fucking organization of corrupt murders. I know cops but not this era
butch bragg (5 months ago)
Most of these guys jus do jfto puss the cops off to get them to do sumthin and if a cop patrols in a black neighborhood its not profiling fucktards its pulling ppl over
Bungle (5 months ago)
we need the black panthers back
key brize (5 months ago)
we got footage of him robbing the store ??????
key brize (5 months ago)
if we ignore that it means pc culture gone mad
Jefrey Hamilton (5 months ago)
Less tax $ for their corporate death-squads. More money for things actually *Needed* in our community
Ed. Sawyer (5 months ago)
Stop the hate and believe in that
Amy Farrer (5 months ago)
hold. police. accountable.
Jenny Ren (5 months ago)
You could be distracting authorities that should be focused on dangerous situations. These people filming may get hurt or get other innocent bystanders hurt. Why not help police by patrolling dangerous areas by filming criminal activities like drug deals, etc. Help them focus their attention on people you want out of your communities.
Goofy Snookims (5 months ago)
beautiful
Stones Jones (5 months ago)
This is what the the REAL Black Panthers did back in the day. It all started for that reason. Good to see these men doing what men do! Someone needs to in that sick country called the USA.
Levi K (5 months ago)
Lmaooo the beginning is so dramatic and corny 😂
Dean Moore (5 months ago)
I watched vice from the jump.. WTF are u all doing. leaving the whole story out now. need a new young vice channel now.
Dean Moore (5 months ago)
leave the facts out... come on vice..
Matt Orfalea (5 months ago)
3:00 Cop Watch Guy
Hubert Harrison (5 months ago)
It's funny how people in the comment section likes to point out the DOJ report about Mike Brown but not another DOJ report that came out the same day after the report of Mike Brown detailing rampant police abuse and racial discrimination against the fursegon population by the police. Mike Brown grow in a police state where he and his fellow neighbors were subjected to constant harrassment and penalized because of their race.
Larry Young (5 months ago)
Ok guys, I have a SUGGESTION ... Why don’t you film how the drug dealer operates ? How gangs members intimated some neighbors ? How many people instead of work hard and support theirs families, smoke weed on any corner ? Instead of film police officers, record what’s happening on your neighborhood everyday ! Later show all those videos to the community and try to change the world around you Guys......BE MORE RESPONSABLE AND BETTER CITIZENS
TheRamboBeast (5 months ago)
Excellent short documentary. Raw and authentic. And highlighting important solutions to a major problem.
Mizik (5 months ago)
Cop watch starts with good intentions then over time it turns into a violent gang, watch...

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