An Oregon deputy claimed it was illegal to record him before arresting a man who had been recording a traffic stop from a considerable distance.
The Klamath County sheriff’s deputy had walked up to the man after having pulled over the man’s girlfriend.
Here is the exchange that took place:
Deputy: What’s your name?
Citizen: That’s not relevant at all.
Deputy: Is that recording me right now?
Deputy: Put your hands behind your back.
Citizen: Um, for what
Deputy: It’s a crime to record me
Citizen: No, it’s not, in Oregon …
Deputy: Turn around now
Citizen: If only one party knows that it is being recorded, then that is all that matters.
It is not clear from the Youtube description what the man was charged with, but I sent him a message and commented on the video in the hopes he will respond.
But it has already been established that citizens have the right to record cops in Oregon because they do not have an expectation of privacy in public, even though they tried to pretend otherwise a few years ago.
From a PINAC piece last year:
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Like in most states, Oregon’s wiretapping laws are outdated, not written for today’s technology-driven era when almost every citizen is armed with a digital camera.
However, because the law states that it is legal to record without consent at “public or semipublic meetings such as hearings before governmental or quasi-governmental bodies, trials, press conferences, public speeches, rallies and sporting or other events,” it has since been interpreted to mean that citizens can record openly where there is no expectation of privacy.
In 2010, after the city of Beaverton dished out a $19,000 settlement to a man who was arrested on wiretapping charges after recording cops arresting his friend, that city’s attorney issued a memo to police explaining that citizens have the right to record cops in public, an excerpt which I posted below.
A bill introduced last year to further clarify the law went nowhere, indicating that politicians fear taking an active stance against cops, even if it is to ensure accountability.
Call the Klamath County Sheriff’s Office at (541) 883-5130.
UPDATE: From the man’s Youtube channel:
No charges no citation no warnings nothing but an illegal search. I told them I do not consent to searches and in turn they turned out my pockets and stuck me in the back of a cop car for 30 minutes