Lawmakers are looking at pushing the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) into repairing and upgrading security systems in federal prisons to prevent future incidents such as the alleged suicide of Jeffrey Epstein.
The bill, known as the Prison Camera Reform Act of 2021, was introduced Wednesday by Democratic Sens. Jon Ossoff of Georgia, Dick Durban of Illinois, and Chuck Grassley of Iowa. The legislation aims to “to require the Director of the Bureau of Prisons to address deficiencies and make necessary upgrades to the security camera and radio systems of the Bureau of Prisons to ensure the health and safety of employees and inmates,” according to the bill.
“Blind spots, lost footage, and technical failures are unacceptable in federal prisons, which must be cleaned up and held to the highest standards,” Ossoff said, according to the Associated Press.
— Jon Ossoff (@ossoff) September 29, 2021
Faulty prison cameras became an issue following the death of Epstein when it was discovered by investigators that some cameras at his unit in the Metropolitan correction center did not work properly and some cameras did not capture anyone coming in or going out from Epstein’s cell, the AP reported.
The FBI examined two cameras from Epstein’s cell at a major crime lab in Quantico, Virginia, and discovered that one camera had footage that was considered to be “unusable” sparking doubt around the nature of Epstein’s death, according to The Hill. (RELATED: Judy Woodruff Asked Bill Gates What Lessons He’s Learned From Jeffrey Epstein. ‘Well, He’s Dead So … “)
The legislation would require the BOP to submit a plan to congress to address any and all deficiencies in its security systems and make upgrades to ensure proper storage, logging, preservation and accessibility of records; The Hill reported.
“Blind spots, lost footage, and technical failures are unacceptable in Federal prisons, which must be cleaned up and held to the highest standards. We hope to achieve swift passage of the bipartisan Prison Camera Reform Act of 2021,” Ossoff said, according to The Hill.
If passed, the agency would have three years to implement the plan.