Radley Balko, who writes opinionated reporting for the Washington Post, teased this story today and some circumstantial evidence exists that he may have Little Rock under his microscope.

In June, Balko wrote about “conveniently” malfunctioning police body cameras.


I’m currently working on a long investigation into police misconduct in Little Rock. It’ll be published here in the weeks to come. In the meantime, here’s a little preview: A couple of years ago, civil rights attorney Mike Laux deposed Little Rock Police Department Capt. Heath Helton about a similar recurring pattern in the LRPD — the pattern in which cops fail to activate their cameras during use-of-force incidents, and are ultimately found to have violated policy there, but are cleared of excessive force, precisely because there’s no footage to corroborate the alleged abuse. Helton at the time was the head of training at the LRPD. Laux asked Helton if such a pattern might create an incentive for police officers to fail to activate their devices just before engaging in excessive force. Helton didn’t seem to think it was a problem.

Balko said then that he had a long-term project underway in Little Rock and on his Twitter account today posted video of a police raid in an unnamed city. Mike Laux, who’s filed a number of cases against Little Rock police, retweeted the video and invited readers to guess where it was made.

I guessed Little Rock in a Tweet. I have had no disagreement as yet. We’ll see. Interesting wherever it happened.


Balko writes and edits The Watch, which reports on civil liberties and criminal justice.