Alicia Calzada in the Minneapolis Post: Minneapolis Says It Will Discipline Cops Who Interfere With Bystanders Filming Police Actions


Minneapolis Police Department brass are preparing a new policy governing video recordings of police activities, but it's not the one that has gotten a lot of media coverage – a long-discussed roll-out of body cameras for all officers, something that is set to begin in late May.

The other new policy will state that the public has a right to take photographs and video of officers while they are working. That right is not the department's to grant, since it's been determined in multiple court rulings that such activity is covered by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution...

While news photographers don't have special rights to record actions of police officers, they do have the same rights are other citizens – and exercise them more frequently. Still, Alicia Calzada, an attorney for the National Press Photographers Association (NPPA), said interfering in news gathering is "a persistent problem around the country.”

Calzada has seen other departments attempt to develop policies similar to what is being considered in Minneapolis. "There is definitely a need for better education on the right to record police and such policies are helpful,” she wrote via email. To that end, the NPPA cooperates in training sessions with police departments on the right to record.

Excerpted from the Minneapolis Post. To view the full article, please click here.

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