Even after Mark Lambrych recovered the footage that had been deleted after his arrest, showing a volatile deputy storming up to him and yelling “get the fuck out of here” before pouncing on him and arresting him, ordering him to “stop resisting” as Lambrych pleads that he is not resisting, his lawyer still believes he is guilty.
Guilty of video recording the cop from a public street instead of leaving as he was told. Guilty of harassing a neighbor for pointing a camera towards his home. And guilty of pretending to be a journalist when he doesn’t even work for a television station or newspaper.
But obviously you get what you pay for when you opt for a public defender in Oneida County in upstate New York, one who specializes in divorce law. Especially when your alleged “victim” is one of the most well-connected and influential men in town.
But if anybody is guilty, it is Oneida sheriff’s deputy Lee David Broniszewski for attacking him and most likely deleting his footage as well as for filing a false police report against Lambrych, which left him in jail for ten days on a single charge of obstructing governmental administration where he was not even allowed a single phone call to have someone bail him out.
And if anybody else is guilty it is purported victim Patsy Duggleby, a 66-year-old man who not only sits on the planning board of Vienna, a lakeside town of less than 6,000, but calls himself the “captain of the fire police,” meaning he may have been on the scene of at least two fires that led to the arrest of fellow firefighters on arson charges last year.
Duggleby, who once sat on the town’s ethics board, lied in a deposition about the events that took place on July 18, 2013, claiming that Lambrych had not only harassed him earlier that year at the scene of a house fire, which is believed to have been started by arson, but had trespassed on his property and become belligerent with the deputy on the day of his arrest.
And Lambrych’s lawyer, George Massoud, can be heard on an audio recording telling his client a number of ludicrous things like he should not have placed his hand up when the deputy was about to pounce on him, which can be seen in the :32 mark as clearly a natural reaction and not violent in any way, or that he has less rights to shoot video in public because he is not an “accredited member of the media.”
New York is a one-party consent state when it comes to recording conversations, meaning you do not have to advise the person you are talking to that you are recording, which is why we’re able to provide the clips below.
Massoud has been urging him to accept a plea deal where he would be forbidden from ever pointing a camera in the direction of Duggleby’s home, which he rejected because he never leaves home without at least two cameras and he maintains a Facebook page called Oneida Lake Campgrounds where he is always posting photos of the area.
“I live within eyesight of his home,” he said in an extensive interview with Photography is Not a Crime. “What happens if I get a pair of Google glasses and even look in that direction?”
The problem is, he can’t afford a proper lawyer. And from the sounds of it, it doesn’t appear as if any lawyer in that town would want to go against Duggleby.
So up until now, he has been fighting this on his own, even though he is scared, confused and unsure of whom to believe (it took more than a day to persuade him to even go on the record with me).
But he is strong enough not to accept his lawyer’s plea deal. And he was smart enough to recover the video files from his camera after they finally returned it to him last month, more than seven months after his arrest.
And even when he realized the files were corrupted, he was persistent enough in finding somebody who could repair them, ending up on Reddit where more than 80 people participated in the challenge, recovering several clips, which when pieced together, prove Lambrych’s innocence (you can see them below).
From there, the video of his arrest went viral, but up until now, the story hasn’t been told.
Denied Access to Public Land
The problem is that Duggleby has been treating the public land across the street from his home, Fels Street to be exact, as his private property, chasing Vienna residents off when they try to use it to launch their boats into the creek. He even placed a flagpole on that land in a defiant territorial claim.
It got to the point where a small group of residents launched a petition in the hopes to get town officials to recognize the property as public, but it only generated 11 signatures, obviously not enough to sway officials against Duggleby. Click here on Google Maps to get a better idea of the area, even though it doesn’t offer Street View.
Then there were the arsons. A whole string of them during the first part of last year that kept all the local volunteer fire departments busy.
One of these fires started at the home of Lambrych’s friend last April, which was unoccupied at the time because it is used seasonally. But Lambrych always makes it a point to keep his eye on the home because it had been burglarized a few years earlier (by an ex-cop nonetheless), so he rode his bike up to the scene with his cameras to start taking photos.
But he was chased off by firefighters and deputies, who accused him of obstructing, as he explained in an email:
I stood next to some plain-clothes guy and he asked me who I was filming for, assuming I was part of a news crew as everyone does. I told him I was filming for the owner, then the fire chief came over (I think it was the chief), asked me who I worked for I said no one. When I said this, he got into my face and touched the cameras and said he doesn’t want to be goddamn filmed and called a deputy over. The deputy grabbed and shoved my camera down.
The fire had already been put out and there didn’t appear to be much damage, so he didn’t bother sticking around, riding his bike to a friend’s house where he stayed a few hours before heading back home. That was when he noticed a white pickup truck in front of his friend’s house with the engine running and the windows fogged up.
He rode up to take a closer look and that was when he met Duggleby for the first time, who immediately ordered him away, threatening to run him over with his truck. Lambrych rode away and didn’t think much of the incident until he received a court summons a few weeks later.
Below is Duggleby’s complaint of harassment against Lambrych that led to the summons, which has since been morphed into his July arrest as a single case.
Less than a month after that encounter, two local firefighters, including a volunteer fire chief, were arrested on arson charges for fires unrelated to the one mentioned above, one of the men captured in the act by a trail camera, so you can see their aversion to cameras.
But there were several other fires that were believed to be arson, including the fire at his friend’s home, that have not been tied to the two men arrested, one who has since pleaded guilty, admitting that he started the fire while trying to steal copper wire from the residence.
“There were a lot of unusual house fires during that time,” he said. “After the firemen were arrested, there hasn’t been anymore that I know of.”
On July 13, 2013, Lambrych was standing on the public strip of land across the street from Duggleby’s home, taking photos of Fish Creek for his Facebook page, when Duggleby walked out of the house, ordering him away from the area.
One of Lambrych’s recovered videos shows Duggleby first telling him to leave the area, then telling him to “come over here” after Lambrych suggests he call the cops.
But when Lambrych did walk towards him, crossing the street and onto his property with his camera recording, Duggleby then ordered him to “get off my fucking property,” which he did.
Lambrych then called the cops and waited for them to respond, remaining on the public river bank across the street from Duggleby’s property, which can also be seen in one of the videos below.
And Duggleby also called the cops, according to his deposition, which is below, based on the fact that Lambrych wouldn’t leave the public area in front of his home while holding a camera.
Duggleby’s wife, Mary, claimed that she felt “threatened” by Lambrych’s actions in her deposition, insisting that she wants “criminal action taken against Mark for coming here and filming us and scaring me,” which you can also read below.
When deputy Broniszewski arrived, he pulled up in front of Duggleby’s home and began talking to him in his front yard. Wanting to give the deputy his side of the story, Lambrych rode his bike up behind Broniszewski’s car to wait his turn.
That was when the deputy ordered him to “get the fuck out of here,” which led to his arrest.
It was ten of the worst days of his life where he was not only not allowed to make a phone call, he was placed in a suicide ward.
“The conditions inside were very disturbing,” he said. “The medical attention I requested fell on deaf ears.”
But he still faces charges of harassment and obstructing governmental administration. And he really needs a lawyer.
On the bright side, he has already been in contact with the ACLU of Syracuse, so hopefully, they will step in.
Call the Oneida County Sheriff at (315) 765-2200.