How to provide evidential video footage to the Police

To be admissible as evidence, video footage must be reliable. There are methods of capturing video footage that can support or improve its reliability.

1. Prepare your equipment

  • Check that your equipment is in working order

2. Provide an introduction using either an information board or voice using the microphone

  • Provide your name, location (GPS if available) or identifiable landmarks, the date and time, who you are with

3. Film a panoramic clip from the point you start recording to provide an overview of the area and situation

4. Where possible, film uninterrupted footage of alleged criminality as opposed to short clips which could be misinterpreted.

5. Complete a supplementary report to provide additional information to assist investigators to identify key events and timings and enable the video footage to be used evidentially. Your report should include;

  • a description of the video footage
  • the location where the film was made
  • the time, day and date of filming
  • the individual who made the film
  • the location and method of storage for the original film
  • the location and method of storage for any copies of the film

Ideally, the format of the video footage should be MP4, although the Police will take other formats if MP4 is not available.

The Police must be able to show that the video footage produced in evidence is the original or an authentic copy of the original and show that it has not been tampered with.

In order to do so, statements must be available which produce the video evidence as an exhibit and which cover its continuity and security.

If any edits or enhancements have been made to the video, this must be identified to the Police with an explanation as to why the edit or enhancement has been made.

If the Police retain the original video footage, a statement from the person who took the film (together with continuity statements) will be sufficient to produce the video-recorded evidence as an exhibit.

The continuity of all exhibits must be maintained, and every movement and transfer accurately recorded.