The Philadelphia Police Department, which has long been considered one of the most corrupt in the nation, is the latest police department to issue guidelines to its officers on dealing with citizens who record them in public.
And for those officers who did not get the memo, they are being treated to a refresher course on the First Amendment via dispatchers.
The two-page memo was issued last month, according to the Philadelphia Daily News.
The memo said that officers “should reasonably anticipate and expect to be photographed, videotaped and/or be audibly recorded by members of the general public.”Additionally, “officers have no authority to confiscate the recording devices” and should never intentionally damage or destroy them or delete images, the memo said. However, if an officer believes that the device contains evidence of a crime and fears that it may be destroyed, the officer can confiscate it without a warrant.
The Daily News did not provide the actual memo, but it sounds a lot like the one issued by the Miami Beach Police Department two months ago.
Even the Cleveland Police Department, which hasn’t experienced any high-profile incidents, issued guidelines over the summer.