Monday, July 14, 2008

this makes me angry

TN man arrested for photographing a cop
If this doesn't scare you , then your blood is ice.
"Here's a guy who takes me out of the car and arrests me in front of my kids. For what? To take a picture of a police officer?" said Scott Conover.
A Johnson County sheriff's deputy arrested Scott Conover for unlawful photography.
"He says you took a picture of me. It's illegal to take a picture of a law enforcement officer," said Conover.
"Unlawful photography" in a public place? I don't think so. Memo to cop: Get a good civil attorney. Memo to the town of Mountain City: Are your liability premiums paid up?
Northeast TN blogger DeMarCaTionVille: Refusing to delete pictures taken from a public area isn't disorderly. It's asserting one's rights. And while I understand the reasoning behind the "don't point big scary lasers at cops" law, the charge just doesn't fly in this case. If the officer asked Conover to delete the photos, he had obviously established this wasn't a laser.
What happened seems clear to me: Conover annoyed the cop by taking his picture. When Conover refused to delete them, the cop got angry and arrested him. (After all, the photos might have been taken with the intention of policing the police - and how dare a mere mortal citizen do this? ) After the arrest, the officer scrambled to find some law, any law which would back up his actions.
Conover heads to court on August 6th - and I imagine the charges will be dismissed. The department surely knows all Hell will break loose if they're not - but is this good enough?
This man was arrested on trumped up charges, hauled off to jail in front of his kids and had more rights violated than you can shake a stick at - I'll also bet Conover's photos were erased. Even if the whole thing is tossed out, who won?

power corrupts


Hose Juan said...

Sadly many police officers seek the job for just that... A power trip.

Gus said...

Cops and security guards around the country are cracking down on illegal photography of all kinds. Buildings, police officers, public streets. These guys are on the front line of the war on terror,you know.

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