Ohio Cops Threaten to Arrest Man for Recording Against Suspects' Wishes


Police are now claiming they are merely trying to protect the privacy of suspects they are arresting when they order citizens not to record them in public.

As if suspects somehow had an expectation of privacy in public.

This apparently is just another ruse to keep people from recording them. Not much different than the “phone could be a gun” routine we’ve seen several times this year.

We saw it earlier this month when an Orange County sheriff’s deputy detained a man recording her, claiming she was trying to protect the man she was arresting.

The latest example comes to us from Goshen, Ohio where a police officer tells a man he doesn’t mind being recorded, but the handcuffed suspects do mind.

“I don’t mind you filming me,” the cop tells Kameron Kolding in the above video.

“But these guys in the back of the cop car would like you not to film them.”

When Kolding points out that they have no expectation of privacy, the cop threatens to cite him for obstruction.

“When I tell you not to do something and you continue to do it, that’s obstruction,” the cop states.

Kolding eventually has to leave to prevent getting arrested.

The cop is obviously familiar with Kolding because of previous incidents in which he was trying to record them in public, only to get cited or threatened, as you can see in the videos below.

Contact the Goshen Police Department:

Goshen Township Police Department

Phone: 513-722-3200

Fax: 513-722-3201

Chief of Police Ray Snyderray.snyder@goshen-oh.gov

Captain Bob Rosebob.rose@goshen-oh.gov


Goshen Police Chief Ray Snyder
Goshen Police Chief Ray Snyder

About Carlos Miller

Carlos Miller is founder and publisher of Photography is Not a Crime, which began as a one-man blog in 2007 to document his trial after he was arrested for photographing police during a journalistic assignment. He is also the author of The Citizen Journalist's Photography Handbook, which can be purchased through Amazon.

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  • Andrew Ogiba

    I have a badge, do what I say or get arrested! God I love police officers.

  • rick

    Congratulations officer! Your actions are considered coercion, a second degree misdemeanor. In addition you have opened your department to civil liability for engaging in prior restraint!

    “(A) No person, with purpose to coerce another into taking or refraining from action concerning which the other person has a LEGAL freedom of choice, shall do any of the following:
    (4) Institute or threaten criminal proceedings against any person;”

    I hope the videographer takes action against this BS. Good luck!

  • jeff

    These are always sickening, but they are much more compelling when they’re so close to home. Goshen is just down the street from my office in Cincinnati. Yikes.

  • discarted

    How ironic, nowadays cops generally don’t seem to care about anybody’s rights, but all of a sudden these officers are concerned about an arrestee’s privacy? Guess police should stop handing out mug shots and police reports to the public and news agencies. You know, to protect arrestee’s privacy.

  • discarted

    Here’s an example of Goshen Township police hypocrisy. They proudly blast the image of a man who was arrested for selling marijuana on their website. So much for privacy.

    To use a line from the New York Times, “The Goshen Township police have lost all credibility on this issue.”

    • rick

      Do the pictures of the cop’s spouses, sons, and daughters get posted when they are arrested?

  • discarted

    Here’s another one of a man arrested for DUI.


  • discarted

    And the Goshen Township Police Department hypocrisy continues…


    I think I got the message across, but if you wanna see more photos of people arrested by Goshen Township police just go here.


  • silly

    “When I tell you not to do something and you continue to do it, that’s obstruction,” the cop states.

    it has to be a lawful order…

    • rick

      “(A) No person, without privilege to do so and with purpose to prevent, obstruct, or delay the performance by a public official of any authorized act within the public official’s official capacity, shall do any act that hampers or impedes a public official in the performance of the public official’s lawful duties.”

      • Harry balzanya

        Hampers or impedes doing nothing from across the street observing with a camera engaging in lawfully protected activity is not hampering or impeding , hampering or impeding the lawfull gathering of a news event is is prior restraint I belive that is a fedesrl crime.

        • rick

          I am not disagreeing. As we can all see the cop is falling back on ol’ trusty obstructing (even though it doesn’t apply) to impinge the individual’s first amendment rights.
          The cop’s actions are criminal but nothing will come of it unless the videographer files suit.

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            Actually the officer can make a legitimate argument that it does apply, even though it is BS. He’ll have to take it to appeal to distinguish it from this case. There are other cases that would indicate he might have problems on appeal, but this is the closest to the facts of his case.

            “Merely failing to move away from a scene, by itself, arguably might not constitute an affirmative act. However, given that [the defendant] was fully cognizant of the fact that a traffic stop was underway, that she approached the vehicle despite that knowledge, that the officer ordered her to move away, that she failed to do so and instead began to approach the officer while cussing at him, and that the entire episode took twenty minutes, we conclude [the defendant] was acting in an affirmative manner. Furthermore, the duration of the episode, the
            profanity and screaming, and the act of walking toward the cruiser
            despite orders to leave the scene, lead us to conclude that the trial
            court did not err in determining that the State established that [defendant] acted with purpose to delay or hinder [the officer].” State v. Sims, 2008 Ohio App. LEXIS 5251, *8-9 (2008).

          • harry balzanya

            This is nothing close to what happened in this video and noreasonable person would claim that it did.

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            Well, let’s compare.

            Both approached the police vehicle.
            Both were aware that a traffic stop was underway.
            Both were ordered away by police.
            Both failed to move away (in the earlier video, the one he got the ticket for).
            She cursed, he filmed.
            Both acted in an affirmative manner (based on another opinion that states speech is an affirmative act, and filming is speech).
            In both, the officer claimed he was hindered or delayed due to the individual.

            You’ve got one difference, cursing vs. filming. That’s it.

            This is what the prosecution will argue to uphold a conviction. They won’t roll over and play dead, and the analogy is how they will show it. He’s got to show that he was exercising a constitutional right that did not interfere, which will be tough. In Ohio, the courts have held that “truthful speech can satisfy the act element of the statute….” State v. Wellman, 879 N.E.2d 215, 219 (Ohio Ct. App. 2007).

            Look, I think the charge is BS, but it doesn’t matter what I think. It matters what the law states and how the courts interpret the law.

          • rick

            Your comparison is off kilter.
            “The guys in the back of the cop car asked you not to film, so I am asking you not to film.” Intent comes up often at PINAC and the above cop’s intent is clear (to me at least). If the cop had asked the videographer to step back, fine. Since the cop requested filming cease or be charged with obstruction no prosecuting attorney would touch this.

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            OK, let me explain it more clearly. He has already been convicted once for Obstructing Official Business, R.C. § 2921.31, and is awaiting sentencing. He faces up to 90 days in jail. The only ways that he doesn’t go to jail is if the judge is lenient or if he appeals and wins.

            To win an appeal, he has to show a difference between what case law says is a good arrest and conviction, and what is not a good arrest and conviction. That’s if he preserved error at the trial court – which is doubtful if he represented himself (and he probably did, since he was making sovereign citizen comments). If he didn’t preserve error, he’s done.

            The officer’s intent in a completely separate incident is not relevant to the incident where he was cited and convicted. Further, so long as the elements of the offense are objectively met, it doesn’t matter what the subjective intent of the officer was.

            The incident you are talking about would be a brand new charge of Obstructing, on top of the case he was already convicted for. Since he has already been prosecuted once for filming, I would tend to wager that the prosecutor would have no problem doing so again.

          • rick

            You must have more information than me regarding his prior history.
            Regardless, the top video when viewed as a separate event shows no evidence of obstruction, which we both agree. My argument is that the case law cited to support a hypothetical arrest is very weak, at best.

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            Nope, it is from what is in the videos. In one of the videos at the bottom, he is being cited for obstruction. In the video at the top, the officer says that he was convicted and he replies that he is pending sentencing.

          • rick

            My comments relate only to the first video. Your comments seem to be directed towards the third video.
            I must have turned two pages at once…

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            No prob. It’s easy to do that when your only communication is by written comment.

            No harm, no foul. Play on.

          • steveo

            ordered away…..Where? to Nassau? 30 ft back, 100 ft back? Where?

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            In both cases, the officer ordered them to leave the immediate area.

          • steveo

            Where’s the immediate area? and is this definition in the Ohio statute of what an immediate area is? Is the immediate area out of camera range? or is it 1000 ft diameter in any direction? What if I live in the immediate area, do I have to vacate my property or just put down the recording device? When you tell me to get out of camera range, and I’m lawfully present with a license to be present and in the same area as other bystanders that is prior restraint.

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            Since it’s not defined in either the statute or existing case law, that would be a question of fact for the jury.

            It also means that there is no guidance for the officer.

          • Dan Matthews

            Does that then infer that the “immediate area” is up to the officer’s discretion?

          • hazy

            It is illegal for cops to command an individual to leave a public area unless there are high concerns for safety. They can demand you move a certain distance, that should be it.

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            No it’s not, so long as they have a rational basis for the order AND it applies to everyone, not just photogs.

          • legalpanther

            Actually, it will be the prosecution that needs to argue that this decision needs to be applied to this case. You see, Goshen is in Clermont County, which is located within the Twelfth District Court of Appeals. The decision cited is from Montgomery County, which is located in the Second District Court of Appeals. Thus, the decision out of the Second District is merely a persuasive decision to those courts located in the Twelfth District. In other words, the Courts in the Twelfth District are not bound by the decisions of the Second District.

            Now, it has been my experience that if there are no similar cases out of the Twelfth District, trial courts generally look to neighboring appellate districts for guidance. The Twelfth and Second border each other. When it really becomes interesting is when you have two diametrically opposed opinions from two neighboring districts. Those are actually fun to argue.

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            LOL, true, I’ve listened to some of those.

            I usually don’t get overly technical on the difference in districts for two reasons. First, most of the readers are lay people and second, I’m used to Texas where an intermediate court of appeals can have statewide precedent, given certain factors.

  • Tijuana Joe

    Wow, these “rogue” explanations of why people cannot film arrests spread
    like wildfire. I had not even heard of this angle until that deranged Orange County
    androgynous cop used it last week, now they’re using this over in Ohio!!
    Meanwhile if you do get arrested be prepared to pay off $$ to mugshots.com,
    bustedmugshots.com and the whole extortion racket.

  • Mike Ross

    ““When I tell you not to do something and you continue to do it, that’s obstruction,” the cop states.”

    When you give me an unlawful order, imposing an unreasonable time/place/manner restriction on my first amendment rights, and you do it in uniform with a gun on your hip, that’s a felony.

    • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

      No, it’s not.

      • Guest

        You don’t think it’s possible to ever make the case that it would be a violation of oath of office? While that’s a misdemeanor in most states, isn’t it a felony in some?

        • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

          In most states, you have to have an affirmative duty that you violated. This doesn’t even come close.

          • Guest

            “I will uphold and support the Constitution of the United States.”

          • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

            It takes more to make a criminal case out of it.

      • Difdi

        In federal statutes or case law, does simply being visibly in possession of a dangerous weapon convert an unarmed crime into an armed one, even if the weapon is not actually drawn?

        I know some states do this. Some even do it for a concealed weapon that the crime victim is wholly unaware of.

        It is quite common for the law (both state and federal) to look at maximum sentence length to determine whether a crime is a misdemeanor or a felony crime, when e statute does not actually use the words misdemeanor or felony. By that measure, any crime that carries a penalty of 10 years in prison if convicted would certainly be a felony.

        If it being armed does turn a crime into an armed crimenat the federal level, then violating 18USC242 as a uniformed, armed police officer might well be a felony.

  • tiny

    COPS/pigs create law, so what the fuck are we going to do about it! nothing! talk is about it! so nothing changes, and everyone will still be going, WTF a few months from now, why is this shit going on? :(

  • steveo

    Leos…… you are not in charge of censorship. You don’t get to decide what is newsworthy and what isn’t newsworthy, leave that up to the courts, and the courts have already decided this issue over and over and over and the courts do not allow censorship. You have to have some legitimate time,place and manner restrictions that apply to everyone, not just the guy with the camera.

  • Chris Brunnquell

    Response from Chief of Police Ray Snyder:
    Chris, the officer in the video was incorrect in his assessment of the situation; the recorder was not committing any criminal offense. It came to the attention of our shift supervisor later that same night at which time he counseled the offending officer on the topic, as it relates to the law.

    • Proud GrandPa

      Cool! That’s great news. An ethical and polite question to and an equally polite response from the Chief of Police about photography rights, confirming a citizen’s right to photograph. I am very pleased. The photogs continue to enjoy their rights, the police avoid repremands, and we the people (taxpayers) avoid the cost of lawsuits. I’d say that’s a win all around.
      Even our sovereign citizen benefits by gaining some helpful insights into the law and by seeing people’s reactions to polite behavior. There is hope in this.

      • http://excoplawstudent.wordpress.com/ ExCop-Lawyer

        PGP, the sovereigns don’t have a clue about the law.

  • Phillip D Breske

    I wrote to the Chief of Police Ray Snyder and received this response:

    “The new recruit that made those statements was not correct in his assessment; it came to the attention of our shift supervisor later that same night at which time the offending officer was counseled on the proper way to handle these situations.”

    I replied with a question about how he was counseled and what exactly all of the officers are being taught on how to properly handle these situations, but have yet to receive a reply.

  • jch9596

    Don’t know what these guys were arrested for, but by the LEO’s own faulty logic, isn’t he mostly at fault here for them getting video’ed while being arrested? I mean, he’s the one arresting them in public.

  • JustaVetSailorfromPennsylvania

    Send an email to the Chief of Police of Goshen, Ohio. Am most happy to report that I received the reply from the Police Chief of Goshen, Ohio with regard to his officers conduct:

    “The new recruit in the video was incorrect in his assessment of the situation; the recorder was not committing any criminal offense. It came to the attention of his shift supervisor later that same night and he was counseled regarding the law on the topic and how to properly handle such situations in the future.

    Thanks for writing Michael.

    Ray Snyder

  • Bill.

    The police department of Goshen, and the -municipal- (not common pleas) judicial system of Clermont County in general, is thought by to be by many, in fact, quite corrupt. At least among younger people in the community- the elder citizens are blissfully unaware and subscribe to the “public servants are always heroes mentality”. … And Robinson is allegedly the worst offender of the Goshen PD. I can say the following with absolute certainty: He regularly goes on fishing expeditions. I.e., he collects trash of people who have previously had dealings with him to find something to prosecute for them for (because he dislikes them). He regularly violates Fourth Amendment rights. He also destroys evidence (I have heard of him deleting his dashboard cam on numerous occasions). I’ve heard so much about this guy, from his victims, from lawyers, and even from other cops. By the latter, he’s generally just regarded as a dumb bully who skirts procedure. If you don’t believe me, ask around.

    Other cops in his department are accused of stealing money and drugs from the evidence locker, as of this year. Thousands of dollars worth. They were trying to sweep it under the rug using an internal investigation, but the commissioners finally called them on since the investigating officer was one of the two under suspicion, and had not shown any evidence he was investigating it, months after he said he would.

    Avoid these people, if you feel that’s best. Record them, if you can’t. Robinson especially. Don’t let him bully you, or make up a phony charge to try to confiscate your device. He threatens people with obstruction all the time. This is a cop who uses his badge as a weapon, and regularly tries to circumvent the Fourth Amendment. He’s not evil. He just seems to think the ends always justify the means, and that cops are above the law. Don’t let these people turn your rights into mere suggestions. Unfortunately, the municipal court seems complicit in his behavior, so he’s never called on it.

    As far as privacy, this is a guy who CONSTANTLY leaks his arrests to the media in order to get recognition and promotions. I kid you not. He’s responsible for a good deal of these arrestees having their faces plastered online, in newspapers, and the local television news. Some of these people never even actually committed a crime, but were just accused, wrongly, by him. He doesn’t care about privacy, just being recorded.