Kansas Capitol Police Sergeant Terry Golightley figured he could easily intimidate Addison Mikkelson from video recording in the state capitol earlier today, even though there is no law against it.
But the 17-year-old Topeka resident did an impressive job of not falling for any of it.
Mikkelson, who was arrested last month by Topeka police for jaywalking while trying to record them in public, had shown up to the capitol to inquire why capitol police did not arrest anybody for jaywalking during the previous day’s Kansas Day ceremonies, which was commemorating the day the state was admitted into the union.
But Golightley was more concerned with him video recording the security checkpoints.
First, Golightley did the usual tactic of invading Mikkelson’s personal space, forcing him to walk backwards, then accusing him of crashing into a lady a day earlier, almost knocking her over.
Mikkelson insisted he did not do that, but Golightley ensured him he had it on camera, but didn’t offer to show Mikkelson when he asked to see it.
Then Mikkelson asked him why he did not arrest the jaywalkers from the previous day, but Golightley claimed he had not been outside that day.
But Mikkelson informed him he has video proof that he was standing outside that day, watching the jaywalkers but doing nothing about it.
Golightley then kept telling him he was not allowed to record the security checkpoint, but was allowed to record everything else in the capitol, mostly “things of interest.”
When Mikkelson said the checkpoint interests him, Golightley pulled out the terrorist card.
“If the security interests you, then maybe we should talk to you about some terrorist stuff,” he said.
“I’m interested in seeing how you interact with people,” Mikkelson responded.
When Golightley realized the terrorist card wasn’t going to work, he resorted to the old “need to have their permission” tactic, referring to the general public that has no expectation of privacy entering the capitol.
Golightley informed Mikkelson that he could be sued by people who end up on his online videos, but that an only happen if he uses their image for commercial use, which is not the case here.
When Mikkelson shot that tactic down, Golightley then accused him of stalking the general public by recording them, but that was also a lie because the Kansas stalking statute states that a “specific person” must be the victim, not the general public.
Finally, Golightley had no choice but to resort to the old “I don’t want the camera in my face” as he moved into him, putting his face into the camera.
“You’re the one walking up to me, you can back up anytime and won’t have a camera in your face,” Mikkelson responded, standing his ground with his camera.
Finally, when all tactics failed, Golightley ordered him out of the building.
“You’re a corrupt officer, you know that?” Mikkelson said. “You should take that badge off and stomp on it, that’s what you should do, because you do not deserve that badge.”
Mikkelson, who plans to major in criminal justice as he starts college this year, wanted to be a cop at one point, but he’s now disgusted by what he’s been seeing since his first arrest last month.
He not only had a second incident with an officer from the Kansas Highway Patrol because of his camera, which oversees the Kansas Capitol Police, he says they now follow him when he leaves his house.
But he never leaves home without a camera, so hopefully they’ll be smart enough to leave him alone. Especially now that the local media is paying attention.
He is scheduled for a hearing on his jaywalking charge in March.
Call Kansas Capitol Police at (785) 296-3420.
Send stories, tips and videos to Carlos Miller.