New Bill In Connecticut Would Make It Illegal For Police To Stop You From Recording Them

from the good-to-see dept

We've seen numerous stories in the last year of police abusing anti-wiretap laws to go after people who record police activities in public. Thankfully, there are some people who realize this is wrong. A Connecticut state senator, Martin Looney, has apparently introduced legislation that not only says that it's the right of citizens to record on-duty police officers, but (more importantly) gives citizens a civil action against police officers if they violate that right. As Radley Balko points out at that link:
That second part is important. A right doesn’t mean much if there are no consequences for government officials who ignore it. Witness this case in Florida, where an officer erroneously tries to say federal law prohibits citizen recordings of cops. Even in states where courts have thrown out criminal charges, a cop who doesn’t want to be recorded can still harass, threaten, and even arrest you. You may not be charged. But he won’t be punished, either.
It would definitely be nice if a similar rule was taken up at the federal level.

Filed Under: police, recording


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  1. identicon
    hegemon13, 4 Mar 2011 @ 6:11am

    Re:

    "Cops need the discretion to handle things according to their gut interpretation of procedures and common sense."

    Hogwash. And it's quite scary that you think this is true. Cops need the discretion to handle things according to the law, evidence, and due process. Their "gut interpretation" does not belong in public law enforcement. Legislators and judges provide the interpretation of the law. Cops have only the duty to abide by it and enforce it using the proper, legal processes that do not violate human rights.

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