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Thread started 12 Apr 2013 (Friday) 11:56
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Man arrested for filming police, phone said to be a WEAPON

 
rick_reno
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Apr 12, 2013 11:56 |  #1

I don't think this will end well for the police.

http://www.nbcnews.com …-said-be-weapon-1C9314434 (external link)

A San Diego man was arrested for using his phone to take video of a citation being issued to him after a police officer said phones "can be converted to weapons," and the man refused to surrender the device.

The incident has drawn national attention from the National Press Photographers Association, which has filed a protest with city officials, and the San Diego Police Department says it is now investigating the altercation.

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Last Saturday, Adam Pringle and some friends were being cited for smoking cigarettes on a beach boardwalk (against the law in San Diego), and Pringle decided to record the officer's actions using the camera on his phone. After about a minute of filming, the officer asked Pringle to put the phone away. When Pringle said it was his right to record the encounter, the officer said that phones could be converted to weapons, and insisted he put it away or hand it over. When Pringle refused, the officer then forcibly took it and arrested Pringle for obstruction of justice.

In a second video shot by Pringle's friends, the officer explained that they are trained to consider phones as possible weapons, citing the existence of stun guns and .22 handguns made to look like phones.

The blog Photography is Not a Crime, which first reported the incident, noted that the same reason was used by Florida police in March to justify taking a man's camera and deleting video he had been shooting.

Mickey Osterreicher, general counsel for the National Press Photographers Association, told NBC News Thursday that "it doesn't surprise me that I'm hearing this new wrinkle of a cellphone being a weapon. These are just contextual arguments that police officers are using to prevent these people from exercising their First Amendment rights."

The San Diego Police Department could not be reached for comment by NBC News, although police lieutenant Kevin Mayer gave a statement to the U-T San Diego. Mayer declined to get into details of the case, saying in part:

Our Internal Affairs Unit is conducting an investigation into the incident and they have reached out to the person who was arrested for his statement. Each person involved in this incident is entitled to due process. The best way to ensure this is by completing a thorough, complete and impartial investigation. We take all complaints seriously.

The proliferation of cameras on phones has resulted in more documentation of police actions in general, and especially of the police's reactions to being recorded and filmed — reactions that are often illegal or unwarranted. So much so that the federal Department of Justice recently indicated its interest in such cases by issuing a statement (PDF) regarding another case where police detained a journalist for recording them.

"The United States is concerned that discretionary charges, such as disorderly conduct, loitering, disturbing the peace, and resisting arrest, are all too easily used to curtail expressive conduct or retaliate against individuals for exercising their First Amendment rights," reads one early portion. It also urges that courts uphold clear examples of free speech and assembly such as peacefully recording police in a public place.
Pringle is scheduled to appear in court in late May — but such "discretionary charges" seldom hold up, Osterreicher said. "The charges are almost always dismissed."

The constant presence of cameras everywhere around us is still a relatively new phenomenon, and although the legality of recording police in public has been established in many cases, the attempted suppression of such activities is likely to continue for awhile.

As Osterreicher put it: "You can either comply with the unreasonable request of an officer, or you can risk arrest or injury, and that's just something everyone has to decide for themselves."

"Boy scouts taught me to stand up ... to people who are wrong," Pringle wrote on his Facebook page Thursday.




  
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h14nha
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Apr 12, 2013 13:58 |  #2

The same thing is happening here in Britain. Police are spying on us from every angle but they are shy when the spotlight is trained on them ;) The term "using a sledgehammer to crack a nut" comes to mind


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pyrojim
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Apr 12, 2013 17:18 as a reply to  @ h14nha's post |  #3

1. Everyone and their mother knows that bike cops and lifeguards enforce the public smoking ban on the beach. I was a lifeguard in solana beach for a few years. It sucks to have to do, but come on, put the cig out.

2. The Boy Scouts are nororiously poor role models.

3. That cop was so far out of line it makes me sick. I had to deal with SO much bs being the.... "Pink sheep" if you will at solana beach. It made no one happy that I was smarter, and a better athlete than they were.... Cops have have huge power issues.


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Olicat
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Apr 12, 2013 17:46 |  #4

I am genuinely disgusted that people like that have access to this kind of power.


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tkbslc
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Apr 12, 2013 19:41 |  #5

From the cops point of view, he was a belligerent law breaker who couldn't comply with simple directions. Misbehaving children get their toys taken away.


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samsen
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Apr 12, 2013 19:47 |  #6

Lucky he wasn't shoot to death!


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MDJAK
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Apr 12, 2013 20:03 |  #7

http://www.selfdefense​products.com …one-Stun-Gun-p-18407.html (external link)

Not so far fetched. Oh and there's more

http://www.selfdefense​products.com …one-Stun-Gun-p-18742.html (external link)




  
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Luxornv
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Apr 12, 2013 20:23 |  #8

tkbslc wrote in post #15821701 (external link)
From the cops point of view, he was a belligerent law breaker who couldn't comply with simple directions. Misbehaving children get their toys taken away.

I'm not sure what the context of the actions were. From what was presented in the copied text, the guy was accepting the citation, being cooperative, and recording the officer was in no way hindering what was going on. However, from what I've seen on Youtube, the kinds of people who get ticketed for recording an officer are usually (not always) being arrogant snobs, and in a way deserve the extra citation.

No mention was made as to whether or not the guy was calling the cop names, belittling him, or otherwise being disrespectful.


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MDJAK
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Apr 12, 2013 20:45 |  #9

And another thing. I hate cigarettes. He should've shot them. I would've found him not guilty. :lol: ;)




  
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Scatterbrained
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Apr 12, 2013 20:49 |  #10

tkbslc wrote in post #15821701 (external link)
From the cops point of view, he was a belligerent law breaker who couldn't comply with simple directions. Misbehaving children get their toys taken away.

..and misbehaving cops should have their badges, and their freedoms, taken away. Too many cops don't know the difference between being a representative of the law, and being the law.


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edge100
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Apr 12, 2013 21:13 |  #11

tkbslc wrote in post #15821701 (external link)
From the cops point of view, he was a belligerent law breaker who couldn't comply with simple directions. Misbehaving children get their toys taken away.

From the law's point of view, the cop is wrong. EOS


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mattertea
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Apr 12, 2013 22:28 |  #12

time and time again the courts have ruled that a public official in a public place has no reasonable right to privacy and as long as you aren't interfering in their duties photography is not a crime.



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Glenlivet
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Apr 12, 2013 23:49 |  #13

tkbslc wrote in post #15821701 (external link)
From the cops point of view, he was a belligerent law breaker who couldn't comply with simple directions. Misbehaving children get their toys taken away.

Its really not your place to decide that is it?


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tkbslc
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Apr 13, 2013 18:08 |  #14

Glenlivet wrote in post #15822428 (external link)
Its really not your place to decide that is it?

As much as it is others place to decide the guy is a victim.


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elitejp
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Apr 13, 2013 21:01 |  #15

h14nha wrote in post #15820612 (external link)
The same thing is happening here in Britain. Police are spying on us from every angle but they are shy when the spotlight is trained on them

Dont know about Britain but in the US every squad car has a video camera in it which puts the spotlight on the cop and anyone else in the vicinity

Of course whenever these topics come up I like to add my own moral opinion of the way I do things. And thats "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you". No need to get into where I came up with that but ive noticed that if applied things just go alot easier for me. Trying to give the cop a bunch of sh*t isnt the best idea someone could come up with.


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Man arrested for filming police, phone said to be a WEAPON
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