Normally I wouldn’t give a rat’s ass about a local election in North Carolina, but now I want to do anything I can to make sure Judge Beth Dixon loses her reelection bid for Rowan County District Court Judge come this November.
Dixon, who has served as District Court Judge since 2002, last week convicted a woman named Felicia Gibson for resisting arrest for refusing to go back inside her house as she stood on her front porch videotaping police making a traffic stop.
Salisbury Police Officer Mark Hunter actually arrested her inside her home in November 2009, which is reminiscent of the Texas case where a cop followed a man inside his home and arrested him for “illegal photography” as well as the recent case of Arkansas cops arresting a man who stood on his property and called the cops Nazis as they were making an arrest.
But charges in both those cases were dropped by the time they got to court as they should have been in this case.
Dixon obviously has no respect for the Constitution, especially the First and Fourth Amendments.
The resisting-arrest conviction last week of Felicia Gibson has left a lot of people wondering. Can a person be charged with resisting arrest while observing a traffic stop from his or her own front porch?
Salisbury Police Officer Mark Hunter thought so, and last week District Court Judge Beth Dixon agreed. Because Gibson did not at first comply when the officer told her and others to go inside, the judge found Gibson guilty of resisting, delaying or obstructing an officer.
Gibson was not the only bystander watching the action on the street. She was the only one holding up a cell-phone video camera
As a guy who’s been arrested twice for resisting arrest for photographing cops, including one where I was convicted because of improper evidence allowed by a biased judge, this case really aggravates me. Documenting police against their wishes is not resisting arrest.
Obviously, the cops will use that charge against people because there is no law in the books that specifically forbid the recording of police in public.
But it’s up to the judges to keep the laws straight, which is where Dixon failed.
That is why she must not be reelected this November.
Feel free to share your feelings with her on her Facebook page as others have been doing. You’ll have to “like” the page first. Let’s see how long those comments last. She is running against a guy named Douglas Smith.
Editor’s note: As of Monday morning, Dixon has deleted several comments on her Facebook page, so I took the liberty of creating a Defeat Beth Dixon on Rowan County District Court Judge Facebook page.
Gibson plans to appeal the case and I have no doubts she will have her conviction overturned as I did in my appeal.
Below is the video that Gibson recorded the night of her arrest. It’s really hard to make out any details.