This week, New York University’s First Amendment Watch released “A Citizen’s Guide to Recording the Police” a primer for amateur videographers. The guide explains why, under most circumstances, the police can neither seize nor demand to view such recordings — though some may try — and it provides case-law examples. “In this new era, we have armies of citizens out on the streets capable of producing evidence that checks the conduct of public officials,” said Stephen Solomon, the organization’s founding editor. The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker counts well over 400 “aggressions against the press” — including dozens of examples of equipment being damaged — that have marred recent Black Lives Matter protests. About three-fifths of the U.S. population lives in states where federal appeals courts have recognized a First Amendment right to record the police in public, the NYU guide says.
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