Illinois Wiretapping Law Continues to Be Abused by Police

Just, wow.

I’m all for catching the bad guys out there, but this goes too far. As you can see in the above video, the guy who recorded police in public was charged with eavesdropping and faced up to 75 years in jail.  He won the initial case – the local judge dismissed it, citing that the Illinois law was unconstitutional (this should be a complete no-brainer here).

The Illinois legislature and attorney general are apparently idiots though, because the case is being appealed in an effort overturn the lower court’s dismissal.  [Read more...]

Detained for “Photography” by Maryland Transit Police

Train fanatic Christopher Fussell was shooting photos and video of Baltimore’s light rail train when he was stopped and detained by Maryland Transit Police.  The police insisted that it was illegal to take photos and video of the transit system telling him that he “need[s] to cease and desist with the photographing and continue on your way.” [Read more...]

Atlanta Police Delete Photos from Camera, City Settles $40K

As seen in the above video, Marlon Kautz, an Atlanta man attempting to document police activity, had his cameraphone seized after he refused to stop filming them in a public place. Those police officers then deleted the photos/video of the police activity.

In addition to the $40,000 in damages the City is paying to Kautz to avoid a civil rights lawsuit, the Atlanta Police Department is adopting new operating procedures that prohibit police from interfering with citizens who are recording police activity.

It’s nice to see official police procedures catching up with the First Amendment, eh?

[via PetaPixel and AJC]

Freelance Photographer for ProPublica & PBS Detained for Photographing BP Refineries

T-Shirt via Street Giant (http://www.streetgiant.bigcartel.com/product/bp-cares)

T-Shirt via Street Giant (http://www.streetgiant.bigcartel.com/product/bp-cares)

Freelance photographer, Lance Rosenfield, was confronted and detained by BP security, police officers and a DHS agent in Texas City, Texas as he was working on an assignment for ProPublica/PBS concerning a deadly accident caused by BP’s safety violations in 2005.

According to the report from ProPublica, Rosenfield was told that he would be “taken in” if he did not allow the police to review his photos.  Based on the report, when he complied, the police also allowed private representatives of BP to view the images as well. [Read more...]