DOJ Argues Forcefully For Your Right To Photograph And Videotape Law Enforcement
from the good-for-them dept
The surprise part is that the Justice Department appears to be very much on the side of good concerning these cases. Pixiq reports on how the DOJ is forcefully responding to a situation in Baltimore where law enforcement had been finding loopholes to avoid complying with an earlier letter from the DOJ reminding them that stopping people from filming law enforcement violates the Constitution.
The DOJ sent a letter concerning a case where police went after a guy who recorded them and deleted the contents of his phone. In the letter, they state that any injunction has to include clear training:
It is the United States’ position that any resolution to Mr. Sharp’s claims for injunctive relief should include policy and training requirements that are consistent with the important First, Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment rights at stake when individuals record police officers in the public discharge of their duties. These rights, subject to narrowly-defined restrictions, engender public confidence in our police departments, promote public access to information necessary to hold our governmental officers accountable, and ensure public and officer safety.The letter then goes on to detail guidelines for what such training should entail. The full letter, embedded below, is worth reading. I'll admit that given many of the other DOJ actions we've talked about here, I'm a bit cynical when it comes to that operation. However, this seems like a case where it's actually standing up for the public and against the way many in law enforcement seem to view the law.