A Suffolk County police sergeant with more than 30 years on the force proved to have a blatant disregard for basic First Amendment rights when he arrested a news videographer Friday.
Phil Datz, who works for Stringer News Service in New York, was standing across the street, videotaping the tail end of a police chase that ended in a crash when the sergeant stormed up to him and ordered him to “go away.”
Datz was attempting to be cooperative, asking where he could stand, but the cop insisted he just leave the area because it was an “active scene.”
Meanwhile, citizens without cameras were walking through the area without harassment.
Datz ended up moving a block away, but the cop drove up to him and arrested him on a charge of obstruction of governmental administration.
“I’ve been doing this for 30 years and there’s nothing you can hold over my head,” the sergeant tells the reporter.
Tony Ryan, owner of Stringer News, told the Long Island Press that this is the third time in three years that one of his videographers has been arrested.
The Suffolk County Police Department maintains a Facebook page that is mostly comprised of surveillance video of suspects caught in the act of crimes.
Here’s betting they won’t add the above video to that page.