Body-cam vid shows Denver cops cuffed Indy editor as she photographed their badges

The Colorado Independent's editor, Susan Greene, was handcuffed and detained by Denver police officers on Colfax Avenue on July 5. (Screenshot via body-cam footage provided by city of Denver)

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include comment from Denver’s police chief

Police body camera footage released today shows two Denver officers told The Colorado Independent’s editor, Susan Greene, to “act like a lady” as they handcuffed and detained her in July for attempting to photograph them as they responded to a call on a public sidewalk.

Greene was driving along East Colfax Avenue near the Colorado State Capitol building on the afternoon of July 5 when, by her account, she noticed Denver police surrounding a nearly naked African American man sitting handcuffed on the sidewalk, and stopped to see what was happening. (The man was later taken to the hospital and then released that night, the city has said.)

Greene is an veteran investigative reporter who has written extensively about police brutality and incidents in which African-American men have been killed by law enforcement while in custody.

As Greene detailed in a post the next day, and as the body-cam footage confirms, she approached the scene and was immediately blocked by Officer James Brooks.

He continues to block her as she tries to keep shooting, at one point raising the camera high above Brooks’s head.

Brooks is quickly joined by Officer Adam Paulsen, and the two advise her that she can not take photographs because doing so violates the HIPAA rights of the nearly naked man they have cuffed. HIPAA or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act outlines an individual’s rights to medical privacy.

“There’s also a First Amendment,” Greene responds. “Have you heard of it?”

“That doesn’t supersede HIPAA,” Paulsen says.

Brooks repeats Paulsen’s line, and adds, “Step away, or you’ll be arrested for interference.”

The footage shows Greene then directed her iPhone camera at Brooks’s badge, at which point Brook’s swats the phone away and repeats himself: “Step away, or you’ll be arrested for interference.”

Not a second after his warning, the footage shows, the officers handcuff Greene, who shouts, “Ow!”

“Stand up straight,” Paulsen tells Greene. “Act like a lady.”

“Stand up and act like a lady,” Brooks says.

“Are you fucking kidding me?” Greene responds. “Act like a lady?”

“There you go,” Brooks says. “Now you can go to jail.”

After the officers handcuff her, the body-cam footage shows, Greene complains the officers are hurting her as Brooks and Paulsen lead her to the back of a squad car. The officers can be heard telling her that the pain is a result of how she is walking, and that she should “stop resisting.”

“Stop hurting me,” shouts Greene, who also shouts to people on the street witnessing the incident to photograph it.

“You are hurting me,” she says.

“No we’re not,” Paulsen responds. “Walk normal. Stop resisting.”

Greene was held in a police car at the scene for about 12 minutes before being released.

Footage shows that once Greene is released from the police car, she and the officers had a brief exchange in which she asks for their badge numbers and they ask her for her press badge.

No charges for officers

District Attorney Beth McCann last week called Greene to inform her that the D.A.’s office would not be pressing charges against the officers.

Greene detailed the call in a post last week:

(McCann) said a charge of false imprisonment wasn’t an option because there’s an exemption for cops. And she said her office likely would have a tough time convincing a jury that Brooks assaulted me.

I asked McCann about her take on the incident beyond the question of criminality. “I don’t know that he knew you were a journalist, for one thing,” she said. “But people are entitled to take pictures as long as people are not” getting in the way of police. She added that Brooks’ “act like a lady” comment “was a little unnecessary.” And she said we’ll likely be hearing something from Hancock’s administration now that she has made her decision not to prosecute.

Though McCann raised doubts that Greene identified herself as a journalist during the incident, Greene maintains that she did when first approached by Brooks. The body-cam footage provided by police does not include the first moments of Brooks and Greene’s interaction. In addition, the first 30 seconds of each of the body-cam videos provided by the city lack audio. By phone today, Denver Police Department spokesman Jay Casillas said once officers turn on their body cameras to record, the previous 30 seconds of video are captured, but without audio, and that this is why body-cam clips often have silent periods.

Casillas said that an internal investigation into the incident is ongoing, and that he was not immediately aware of any changes the department has made in response to the incident. He said he was also not aware of any timeline for the investigation.

The Independent may take legal action of its own.

“The one thing we’ve seen over and over again is the city drag its feet for months and months and months in doing an internal investigation. Certainly we’re not going to sit on our hands while the city takes its sweet time to investigate an event that took a matter of minutes,”said Mari Newman, a lawyer for Greene and The Independent.

“If we need to file a legal action to hold the city accountable, so be it.”

Newman added that she believes the officers’ assertion that Greene was violating HIPAA is “ridiculous.”

HIPAA does not apply to an individual on the street. It’s designed to protect private medical information — for example, information that a medical provider or an insurance company might have about a patient. HIPAA does not impose any obligations on a private individual walking around on the street.”

Police Chief Paul Pazen said in an interview the day after the footage was released that he could not comment on the investigation since it is ongoing.

Though the incident happened almost eight weeks ago, he said there is no target date by which the investigation will be wrapped. He also confirmed that both Paulsen and Brooks have remained active on the force since July 5, facing no suspension or forced leave.

The department has taken some follow-up action since the incident, sending two emails to its officers about the First Amendment.

The first email, on July 10, reminded officers to review DPD policies, and the second, on August 16, included a four-page “training bulletin” on the First Amendment, according to a news release from the department.

Pazen declined to answer questions about the treatment of Greene, but he did say he thought his officers treated the nearly naked man with “respect and dignity.” He declined to answer why the man was also handcuffed, citing the ongoing investigation.

“It doesn’t appear that you’re asking any questions with regards to how an individual is treated who’s in crisis,” he said at one point in the interview. “That’s really what we all should be focusing in on.”

“In a situation like this, we should look at the whole picture, not just certain segments that could point one person in a bad light.”

In a letter dated July 10, Pazen wrote that the investigation would produce a “professional, fair, and reasonable” outcome.

The letter was addressed to the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition, the Colorado Press Association and the Colorado Broadcasters Association, which wrote a joint letter to Pazen after the incident, alleging that Greene’s constitutional rights were violated.

Greene said today that the footage confirmed her initial impression of the incident.

“It squares exactly like how I remember it,” she said. “The only thing I didn’t realize is that when it was happening, both of the police officers told me to act like a lady, which raises the question: How exactly should a lady act when being wrongly detained on a public sidewalk for exercising First Amendment rights?”

57 COMMENTS

  1. Clearly someone hasn’t gotten the memo. You have to wonder if the ongoing problem of selective cam operation would go away if police officers were only paid for the hours during which their body cams were properly functioning.

    Local police departments would certainly save money on legal fees and settlements if they trained their officers to be public servants instead of laymen lawyers.

    HIPAA. Too funny. Congrats DPD…you just qualified for yet another of your very own lawsuits due to nothing but your internal culture of ego and stupidity.

  2. I would like to know more about your determined investigation into the suspicious death of a backyard rooster.

  3. Seems justified especially since she as trying to photograph a naked man in medical custody which is a HIPPA matter. Furthermore, looks to me like she was just trying to get attention. Lock her up for a few hours and let her go. I know she’s your own so I would not be surprised if this freedom of speech comment was taken down.

  4. Distracting officers from a medical situation with someone most likely not mentally stable, simply to insert themselves for their own ego. She could have clearly filmed from afar without “interfering” which absolutely warrants an arrest. What did she win? Their lack of couth may be enough to be given a reminder for “Excellence in Customer Service.”

  5. “Though McCann raised doubts that Greene identified herself as a journalist during the incident, ”

    It makes no difference whatsoever if she was a journalist or not, or identified herself as one or not.

  6. “Seems justified especially since she as trying to photograph a naked man in medical custody which is a HIPPA matter”

    What on earth are you talking about? HIPAA applies to private medical records, not someone in public. If someone shouts out “I have a heart issue” do we all have to cover our ears? Yeesh.

    “Distracting officers from a medical situation with someone most likely not mentally stable, simply to insert themselves for their own ego”

    The officers distracted themselves, unless standing there filming something is inherently distracting.

    “She could have clearly filmed from afar without “interfering” which absolutely warrants an arrest.”

    I love that even you don’t buy the “interfering” part and have to put the word in scare quotes.

  7. What do they mean by “act like a lady”? Again, one only needs a GED to become a police officer.in Denver and it is time to strengthen the minimum educational requirements. And Beth….three more years of this DA.

  8. Act like a lady???

    The officers interfered with a working journalist who tried to photograph their badges, and then made sexist statements. Shameful and way more than “a little unnecessary”.

  9. @Phil Gregory:
    HIPAA only applies to medical providers, not the general public. Police cannot and do not enforce HIPAA violations, and even if they could, Greene did not violate any HIPAA provisions. Next time, I suggest you know what you’re talking about before commenting. I also suggest you learn to spell HIPAA properly.

  10. As someone who both loathes journalist and loopy, boomer hippies, this video brings me great joy! 👌👍😃

    Next time put her in the slammer over the weekend boys! And use your nightsticks, you got them for a reason!

  11. As a First Amendment lawyer, I feel obliged to point out that, yes, indeed, the 1st Amendment does “supersede” HIPAA. The 1st Amendment expresses federal constitutional rights. A constitutional provision does indeed “supersede,” dare I say, trumps, a statutory provision. And the HIPAA Privacy Rule — the operative regulation here — is not even a statute. it is merely a regulation. And, that regulation, by its own terms, quite clearly specifically does not apply to anything that happens on a public street in plain view of a passerby. HIPAA simply does not apply. The officer’s state that HIPAA “supersedes” the 1st Amendment is not just wrong, it’s silly.

  12. I have many friends that are cops. They are trained to cuff/detain people (depending on what is going on) at a potential crime scene until they can sort things out.
    First being cuffed can be described from words like horribly discomfort to painful. Your arms are behind your back in most cases. The courts yawn about this. In fact most judges and prosecutors have been cuffed as part of the process they go through.
    Best thing is to not fight (you will always lose) dont resist and shut up i.e dont make comments.
    If you brandish a weapon in front of an officer you likely will be shot multiple times.
    If the officer tells you to put your hands up and you fail to follow the instructions and reach into your pockets or jacket , you might get shot multiple times.
    If you are innocent and follow all instructions to the letter, you will walk away.
    Facts of life

  13. HIPAA does not apply to this journalist as she’s not a Covered Entity as defined by HIPAA itself. It’s also perfectly legal to film the police as long as you don’t interfere with them. These are basic things that every cop should know. These guys were just trying to dominate and intimidate her. Typical.

  14. It appears she was arrested for taking a photo of the badge. One would think the police could have instructed passersby not to approach the ill man on the sidewalk as with an active crime scene, which reporters honor. But if the police are doing nothing wrong, what’s the issue of them being photographed, unless they were working undercover?

  15. First of all she was NOT violating the patients right under HIPAA. There is no expectation of privacy, she was in public on a public street, she had every right to record the incident.

    Second she was not providing care to the individual in question, she is not a doctor, nurse, or paramedic who was expected to provide care to this man. HIPAA DOES NOT APPLY TO HER.

    Police and EMS bandy about the HIPAA label without understanding what it means.

  16. Wow, how much closer to a “Gestapo” state can we get?

    Scary how people condone such actions. A large number of Germans did the exact same prior to Hitler & the Nazis.
    I know, my parents were there.
    They absolutely shudder when they witness what is happening in contemporary America.
    They can’t believe people are so quick to forget lessons of the past, so eager to again renounce liberties & freedoms.

    So many just remain so ignorant of the mistakes/tragedies of the past.
    They choose to live in “the land of the free” yet continually call for greater oppressions.

    Sadly, freedom is just so scary for so many.
    The essay “The Authoritarian Personality in the 21st Century” refers to studies that link this to an undeveloped/under-developed moral-conscience.
    In other words, weak minds need strong leaders/leadership.

    I feel so sorry for those commenters applauding the actions of the police herein, for they are but cowardly, scared, lost souls. They know not the true ramifications of their vast ignorance.

    “Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.”
    (I prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery”)
    -Letter from Thomas Jefferson to Madison, January 30, 1787-

    “To argue with a man who has renounced the use and authority of reason, and whose philosophy consists in holding humanity in contempt, is like administering medicine to the dead, or endeavoring to convert an atheist by scripture.”
    ― Thomas Paine, The American Crisis-

    “Whatever is my right as a man is also the right of another; and it becomes my duty to guarantee as well as to possess.”
    ― Thomas paine, Rights of Man

    “Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom. As nations become more corrupt and vicious, they have more need of masters”.
    -Ben Franklin-

    “There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with the power to endanger the public liberty”.
    -John Adams-

    All that hard work of America’s Founders, all for naught.

  17. Looks like a couple of power tripping idiots. The police department would do well to purge these morons from their ranks before they end up costing taxpayers lots of money that could be better spent else where.

  18. Meh… she needs a better camera; even a pocket camera with zoom.. Just about everyone can agree that the nose of the ambulance denotes the “scene.” With zoom she could have stepped back and got a better picture. Instead she stepped into the scene.

  19. Thank you for this story! And please keep on pursuing action against the police department! I honestly can’t understand why police are not trained in something as simple as people having the right to film them while they operate in public. This is settled law. Brazen bullying aside (and that’s a HUGE aside!), administration needs to do a better job of training its officers on, you know, what the law is and stuff. The fact that these officers either did not know, or ignored, the law surrounding Obstruction of Justice, or that HIPAA is a regulation and not a law at all, means that they are not qualified to do their jobs. period. Reprimand them. Get them trained. And admit that you need to do better.

  20. Cheers, Paul. It takes an amalgamation of thinking like Don’s and Victor’s, and then we have the conditions for a fascist state. What’s scary is the willingness with which they profess their disdain for the basic tenants of our country, in favor of some police state. Absolutely terrifying.

  21. false arrest, assault, battery, false imprisonment…

    1A absolutely supersedes HIPAA. Officers have no enumerated powers to police HIPAA, nor does it apply in public.

    You also don’t need to be a member of the press to record events in public.

    Don’t bother suing the city, don’t harm your fellow citizens, sue the officer directly.

  22. Paul Fredrich you get my standing ovation and admiration.
    Our Founding Fathers may be considered flawed by dissenters or misguided, uneducated, close-minded individuals. Personally, these men as a group were brilliant and we still need to honor the principals and values our Constitution continues to uphold and aspire to.

  23. Its turned into a Police state just what the Trumpanzees wanted.
    Your individualized rights have gone out the window with Trump.
    Trumpanzees, this is great , until it happens to you, and it will.

  24. The bottom line is she interrupted a police investigation.
    In that regard, the police have the right to call the shots
    Yes, she could have stood across the street with the zoom lens on and took all the pictures she wanted, but she interrupted an investigation.
    Sounded like she wanted to aggitate a situation due to an incident in the past with that police dept. If the law says do something, just do it, stop starting and challenging with the 1st Amendment rights. In order to avoid trouble, pay attention to the law………..even if it’s the hardest thing to do. Many situations keep arising because of people challenging the police, but remember, they are there to protect you. There may come that one fine day when you really need them. Think about it

  25. “The bottom line is she interrupted a police investigation.”

    That is completely false and a common misconception when these events occur.

    Let’s be clear.

    These police officers illegally interrupted their own “investigation” to detain a citizen for legally filming their actions.

    They did this because they didn’t want to be filmed.

    That is not their call to make.

    Period. Full stop. End of story.

  26. Time to see those clueless moron cops. HIPAA only applies to a covered entity, not the general public, media and photographers!

  27. D Brown, certain the Supreme Court would side with the individual. If not all is lost. She has every right from a safe distance to film this or any scene where access is not limited. That is the law of the land. HIPPA has nothing to do with this.

  28. Some of these comments just go to show how much like sheep some people are. Most would not have ever thought of HIPPA when they saw this story unfolding until the cop said that was the reason he was doing this bs. He stopped what he was doing to go over to her when he should have been dealing with whatever was going on. She didn’t intefere with him, he interfered with her. People are so quick to side with cops as if they never make mistakes or do the wrong thing. They are not gods so they make mistakes. Out of all the cops there, not one had the common sense to say “do your job & leave that woman alone”

  29. If a police supervisor asked the officer for an “after action” brief on the situation, it would go something like this: “Idiot Leftist Cop-hater looked for trouble, found same.”

    Buwahahahaha.

  30. Why do We The People tolerate ignorant piggish behavior from officers who’ve sworn a solemn oath to not just enforce the law(s) but to protect and defend The Constitution?

    Most officers (including CSPD “constitutional expert” Jeff Strossner) are ignorant of the Constitution, what it contains, and what it all means (to be “the law of the land”). They cannot see the forest for the trees!

    How can patrol officers be expected to know what’s in the Constitution when their “expert” ‘superior’ officers do not?

    That’s how (and why) most officers are totally ignorant, moment to moment, about whether they are protecting and defending the Constitution (and upholding their solemn sworn oath) or eviscerating and shredding the Constitution (rendering their solemn sworn oath worse than worthless!).

    If you ever find a Constitutional lawyer who sees such failures as “silly”, as in https://www.coloradoindependent.com/2018/08/28/denver-police-editor-handcuff-first-amendment/#comment-1617778 , you might want to try searching for a more serious “Constitutional lawyer”!

    If this it not a police state, then can someone please explain why it’s a crime for a person to knowingly provide false information to the FBI (ie, Martha Stewart), but it’s OK for the FBI to knowingly provide false information (ie, 911U.org) to We The People?

    PS: Right on, Jay & Paul!

  31. Obviously both sides just couldn’t think of the right thing to say. Not on their game. So she acts rude, while the police hold her in the vehicle in the case they can think of something to say. Its just all about wit and both parties had none. Anyhow, I see this as a win-win for both sides. As well as for me to be able to watch, I thought it was a very hilarious video and I thank everyone involved.

  32. genuinely torn here- because, if I was that guy being arrested, the LAST thing I would ever want is footage of me, at what is prob the lowest point in my life… idk idk

  33. Andrew, taking a picture is very different from publishing a picture. Susan’s interest was in how the man was being treated by the cops. If he was being mistreated, that would be a story. If he wasn’t, then it wouldn’t be.

  34. Even Officer Barbrady from South Park rolled his eyes when he watched the DPD officers’ stupidity.

  35. D Brown says, “If the law says do something, just do it, stop starting and challenging with the 1st Amendment rights. In order to avoid trouble, pay attention to the law………..even if it’s the hardest thing to do.”

    Here’s a clue, D.

    A police officer’s job is to enforce laws that ACTUALLY EXIST.

    You seem to think that words coming out of a cop’s mouth are the same thing as laws.

    If a cop tells you to give him/her $300, you are under no obligation to comply.

    If a cop tells you to stop recording what they are doing on a public street, you are also under no obligation to comply.

    If they arrest you when you snap a picture of their badge number, that police action is AGAINST the law.

  36. “(McCann) said a charge of false imprisonment wasn’t an option because there’s an exemption for cops. ”

    Well yes, there is an exemption under CO Rev Stat § 18-3-303 for “…peace officer[s] acting in good faith within the scope of his or her duties,” but the video clearly shows that police lied about the law in order to prevent the woman from excercising her first Amendment right.
    One simply can not lie in good faith,

  37. First, these cops represent what is wrong with policing in the US. Second, while I completely understand the desire to document police behavior at the scene and while photographing someone’s badge isn’t interference with police, it might have been wiser to record asking for the cops badge number while keeping the camera and taping on. It’s about being strategic.

    As for McCann, my hunch is that she decided not to prosecute because she knew that in Denver, chances of getting a conviction would be slim. And perhaps even “ slimmer,” if the defendant requested a bench trial.

    Good example of how cops bully, how we need to be strategic and how we need politicians who have a backbone.

  38. Those idiot cops and DPD need a hefty Civil Rights lawsuit brought against them. And training regarding HIPAA, 1st Amendment, and sexim bias at the least.

  39. I hope she sues the hell out of that PD. It’s the only way to make these power-tripping pigs understand—use the same law that they disrespect and abuse, against them.

  40. I’m curious why the body cams weren’t already turned on before Greene arrived on scene? By her account, the officers were surrounding an African-American man they had already handcuffed. If they had to turn on the body cams when Greene arrived, that implies the cams weren’t running for whatever led up to the scenario she was responding to, right? What guidance or rules do cops receive for when to activate their body cams?

  41. I’m speechless and disgusted by you people. All these comments about freedom and how the police were evil. Oh the poor reporter! Oh how the first amendment is lost! Well first you don’t defend the second amendment with such vigor. Second the only clear voice in the wilderness has been the Chief of Police. What about the poor naked guy in crisis. Here’s what I think. I think the only mistake here was the word HIPAA. I think the cops had a scene that was ongoing and not safe. There was a man in crisis, perhaps a medical emergency. Maybe a psychological episode either way the cops were trying to maintain order, keep a safe scene and protect the public. Some lady approached the scene which is a nuisance, unsafe, not respectful, and the public interest wasn’t served by a lady taking a picture of this guys nuts. The cops did good protecting the scene, medics, patients dignity. The only mistake is trying to articulate under the term hipaa which really has become synonymous with privacy. So before you defend this so called reporter, ask yourself if she has the right to run into a burning building to take pictures.

  42. “I’m curious why the body cams weren’t already turned on before Greene arrived on scene? ”
    –TBraunstein

    Bingo!

    That issue might be the most important take away for the city and maybe represents a real world policy change that just might help them save some face.

    Body cams should operate the moment police officers put on the uniform until the moment they take it off. That should go for everyone…prison guards, parole officers, school resource officers, etc.

    It’s quite literally the only effective way to ensure their honesty, as proven time and time again. This case just happens to be the latest example.

    Filmed cops are behaved cops.

    For everyone out there…if you see police in action, do your part to protect the public and film them. You never know what you’ll catch. If you’re approached, for whatever reason, by a police officer, demand that they have their body cam in operation or request to speak to an officer who will comply.

    They are public servants. Time to make them behave as such.

  43. I can’t believe some of these comments. The Officers said, Act like a Lady.” probably because of the vulgari language coming from her mouth, and then someone stated the police should not have interferred with job as a journalist. Serioulsy? You think HER job is more important than the police taking a naked man to the hospital when he is either off his medication or has taken an illegal substance.
    I lived in Colorado for a 18 months or so in the later ’80s. When did people the dummies spring up? Was it the weed? I’ve always thought I might like to move back, but after seeing this report I think I will pass.

  44. Well, applause applause you got the attention you wanted. You would of better off being a hippie in the 60’s. So,if you are in a accident who knows maybe bleeding copusly or staggering half naked would YOU want to be videotaped? SMH

  45. While HIPPA would not apply in this specific situation it is very clear that the officers were conducting an investigation and were securing a scene for both law enforcement and EMS to do their jobs. You can see that Greene is very clearly trying to walk around them and they are preventing her from entering the scene. Then again after attempting the final time to walk around them into the scene of investigation she was arrested. She was arrested for interfering not for violating HIPPA and not for photographing badges. I do find it disturbing and disgusting that she was wanting to photo or video the poor naked guy who was obviously going through a crisis. To what end was she going to use the photos and/or video? Shame on anyone going to bat for her over this.

  46. Just because you can film an incident such as this, doesn’t mean you should. Maybe if this lady treated the situation with a little respect she would have received some. Naked guy on the street? Usually indicates a person suffering from excited delirium brought on by drugs. So not a safe situation. And body cams aren’t on when it’s a naked dude for a medical welfare check. So boo hoo for this “reporter” but clearly her intent was to just be a nuisance.

  47. These cops should be charged with false arrest, criminal misconduct and criminal violations of Susan Greene’s constitutional rights.

    HIPPA only applies in the context of an existing patient practitioner relationship. These cops were evidently reflexively ashamed of what they were doing in public…..and if they were doing nothing wrong there would have been no story to tell.

    I wonder how much more abusive force would have been used if the person trying to record the incident was a large young black male?

    Please sue and use the awarded cash to fund investigative journalism and to organize local cop watch operations. We hire cops to serve and to protect not to abuse and bully.

  48. This is just another example of the police forgetting that their position and authority are derived from the people. People only need immunity when they have committed a crime. Do not allow actions of any kind that are not acceptable torward the public to be allowed to go unchecked. Demand something be done. If you know and yet don’t act, you are no better than the one that do it.

  49. It certainly does’t help that the officer in the video doesn’t seem to understand that HIPAA is not the “Health Information Privacy and Protection Act”. HIPAA is the “Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996”.

    The “Health Information Privacy Protection Act” is something else entirely, it was a bill introduced in the 113th Congress in 2013 that wasn’t enacted. See the below links:
    https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/113/hr3119
    https://www.congress.gov/bill/113th-congress/house-bill/3119

    It’s more than mildly appalling that she was arrested by a man claiming she violated what is actually a dead bill that never got passed into law. He may have meant HIPAA, but the fact he can’t even quote what the HIPAA acronym stands doesn’t bode well for him acting in competence. This man is called to enforce law, and he quite apparently had no idea what he was talking about. Either that or he might have been looking for an excuse to pressure this reporting into not filming his actions.

    To any people claiming the journalist was a “nuisance” and implying she ought to be arrested, just because you don’t like what she was doing doesn’t mean she doesn’t have legal rights. She is allowed to film, what she’s not allowed to do is interfere with the officers work and she doesn’t appear to have been doing that, just standing on a public sidewalk and filming. The officer when confronting her (at least in what we got of the recording) did not start by telling her “you’re interfering”. He told her “this violates HIPPA”, which is ludicrous. He only said “step away or you’ll be arrested for interference” after she ignored his nonsense and kept trying to film, as was her right to do so. It seems like the main mistake the journalist may have made was in trying to step around them after that point to keep filming. They told her to step away, she didn’t do what they said so they arrested her. Frankly, though, it seems like the officers were just trying to get her to stop filming and that’s not their job. It’s not their place to be harassing people who film them, filming is not “interference”. You’re allowed to film the police, it’s legal, and police who try to stop you by coming up with ridiculous non-laws to claim you need to stop are not doing right by your rights.

    This is a good article about all this, please give it a read: https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2015/04/what-to-say-when-the-police-tell-you-to-stop-filming-them/391610/

    Lastly, I think it is possible to pity the poor man on the sidewalk while also recognizing that police arresting a reporter for filming after inappropriately harassing her with nonsensical legalese is also not an okay thing. And whether or not you would want to be filmed if you were in that man’s shoes, your empathy, while a kind sentiment, shouldn’t preclude you from engaging with the legal aspects. Feelings of compassion are nice, but we have a legal system made of laws, not feelings. We really don’t want to be defending the police for rubbing against the grain of the law, that’s not really good for any of us, that poor man on the sidewalk included.

  50. It’s hilarious reading right-wingers calling the journalist a “leftist cop hater”, while they support “right-wing cop hating” directed at the DOJ, FBI, and CIA.

  51. Greene was brave and performing her civic duty. She deserves our thanks.

    “Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?”
    — Juvenal

  52. False imprisonment, treason of the 1st, 4th and 5th, felony assault and battery, aggravated kidnapping, armed robbery, brutalization, defaming someone that never broke a law.
    BY the way treasonous felon traitors with badges, HIPPA applies to medical personnell. You could have been lawfully shot, for all the felonies you just committed…… SUE the cra out of these treasonous felons……
    Trezevant v Tampa, false imprisonment worth 1087$ a minute, upheld on appeal……
    Your sworn oaths supercede ALL treason…
    DA should be sued for breach of fiduciary duty also, for not charging these treasonous felons.
    Giving ignorant traitors badges and guns is really stupid…..

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