The Philadelphia Police Department is now facing its fifth lawsuit for “retaliating against individuals who observe or record the police performing their duties” filed by the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania alone.
Amanda Geraci, a professional psychotherapist and a trained legal observer, was trying to record Philadelphia police officers arresting a protester outside the Pennsylvania Convention Center when she was “forcefully restrained across the neck” by a Philadelphia “civil affairs” officer.
It’s been just over a month since a Ferguson police officer gunned down an 18-year-old man in the middle of the street in broad daylight as numerous witnesses watched in horror, later telling the media that Michael Brown died while holding his hands in the air.
After waiting 24 hours, figuring there was no video footage of the actual shooting, Ferguson Police Chief Thomas Jackson called a press conference and claimed that Brown had attacked officer Darren Ferguson, placing him in fear for his life, leaving him no choice but to fire his gun several times.
A video was posted on Youtube this week showing heavily militarized police from an armored car raiding a man’s home for apparently having video recorded his own court hearing in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
The video was recorded by a camera sitting inside a garage as the cops ordered the man and a woman outside, ordering them to get down on their knees, treating them as if they could at any moment unleash a hail of bullets towards the cops hiding behind bulletproof shields.
Once again, a television news station claims to be clueless about citizens right to record cops, insisting a recent incident in which a Florida woman ended up in handcuffs is “raising new questions about what rights citizens have when it comes to recording deputies on duty.”
The “raises new questions” phrase has become an overused cliche with the media when discussing this issue because it allows them to take a passive stance, rather than come out and say the Orange County Sheriff’s Office screwed up, which might lose them access to the Police PR Spin Machine, which they depend on for their nightly newscasts.
So the media resorts to seeking out attorneys to confirm what everybody but the cops know; that we have the right to record cops on duty. This is not a new issue, so there are no “new questions” that are being raised.