In 2007, attorney Simon Glik noticed several police officers arresting a young man and believing that the officers were using excessive force, began shooting video and audio of the incident on his cellular phone. Following the arrest of the young man, an officer asked and Glik confirmed that his audio recorder was on. Glik was then arrested for violating a state wiretap law and two other state offenses. Though the criminal charges were subsequently dropped, Glik filed a constitutional tort suit alleging violation of his First and Fourth Amendment rights. The officers’ motion to dismiss, alleging qualified immunity, was denied.
In August 2011, the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at Boston ruled in GLIK v. CUNNIFFE that the officers violated Glik’s clearly established constitutional right to video-record the police performing their duties in public.
For a summary of similar cases and for full article see: Good Cop, Bad Citizen? As Cellphone Recording Increases, Officers Are Uneasy – Magazine – ABA Journal.
- Video Tape The Police All You Want: Federal Appellate Court Rules ~ Videoing Police Is Protected By The First Amendment! (politicalvelcraft.org)
- Four Years After Busting a Guy for Recording an Arrest, Boston Police Admit They Should Not Have Done That (reason.com)
- Boston PD admits arrest for cell phone recording was a mistake (arstechnica.com)