Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Every once in a while, a judge makes a judgment so sensible, it’s as if he had this Common  Sense column in mind.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Edmund Brennan has determined that the same right to video-record police in public also applies within a would-be videographer’s home.

The case involves a 2011 search of the home of Mary Crago, which was subject to search without warrant under the terms of her probation. Defendant Kenneth Leonard deleted a video recording she made of the search, telling her that recording it was prohibited. In court Leonard has contended that no right to video-record police officers has been established for persons on probation or in a non-public setting.

To this, Judge Brennan responds that if a plaintiff has “a clearly established constitutional right to record from a public place where the plaintiff has the lawful right to be, a plaintiff surely has such a right in his or her home.”

Brennan sees no “no principled basis” for the assumption that we have a protected right to record officers performing their duties in public that “does not extend to those performed in a private residence. The public’s interest in ensuring that police officers … do not abuse [their] authority … does not cease once they enter the private residence of a citizen.”

If anything, it is even more urgent to protect a citizen’s right to document proceedings when an officer’s actions are shielded from public view — from other witnesses.

But of course. It’s just Common Sense, isn’t it?

I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor

2 Comments

  1. Is it possible the reason cops want searches to remain secret is to make it easier to steal something or plant evidence?

  2. MoreFreedom says:

    This is another reason why police should have body cameras on them recording their actions, and the actions of the public in their view, at all times when they are on duty or in uniform (bathroom breaks excepted).

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