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Friday, June 15, 2007
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This Law is Rodney King Approved

A man was arrested in Pennsylvania for video taping a police officer during a standard traffic stop.  His crime?  Well... video taping a police officer during a traffic stop:

Brian D. Kelly didn't think he was doing anything illegal when he used his videocamera to record a Carlisle police officer during a traffic stop. Making movies is one of his hobbies, he said, and the stop was just another interesting event to film.

Now he's worried about going to prison or being burdened with a criminal record.

Kelly, 18, of Carlisle, was arrested on a felony wiretapping charge, with a penalty of up to 7 years in state prison.

His camera and film were seized by police during the May 24 stop, he said, and he spent 26 hours in Cumberland County Prison until his mother posted her house as security for his $2,500 bail.

Kelly is charged under a state law that bars the intentional interception or recording of anyone's oral conversation without their consent.
...
Police said the officer saw Kelly had a camera in his lap, aimed at him and was concealing it with his hands. They said Kelly was arrested after he obeyed an order to turn the camera off and hand it over.

Kelly said his friend was cited for speeding and because his truck's bumper was too low. He said he held the camera in plain view and turned it on when the officer yelled at his pal.
...
"He said, 'Young man, turn off your ... camera,'ยค" Kelly said. "I turned it off and handed it to him. ... Six or seven more cops pulled up, and they arrested me."

You should always be allowed to video tape the police... especially if you are involved in the incident with them.  In this case, he was in the car that was pulled over.  The police are allowed to video tape you during a stop, and you should likewise be able to video tape them.  Hell, during undercover sting operations they are allowed to video tape you in complete secret.  Because of the police's unique ability to take your rights form you and detain you, they should be held to a higher scrutiny, not a lower one as is done in this case.

Via Hit & Run.

# Posted at 3:08 PM by Nick  |  Comment Feed Link No Comments  |  No Trackbacks

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