Mar 102016
 

We are going to be doing a series of videos in which we talk about changes to the law that took place January 1st, 2016.

In this video we are going to talk about a change to Penal Code section 148 and Penal Code section 69.  Those are the laws that deal with resisting arrest or resisting an executive officer.  And this law change affects the ability to film the police from a public place.

Don’t Interfere with a Police Investigation

Now really, in the end, this probably isn’t a change to what the law meant.  It’s just an explicit clarification for the purposes of everyone to understand that as long as you don’t otherwise interfere with an ongoing police investigation, if you don’t break into a crime scene, if you don’t get in the way of oncoming police vehicles, if you don’t do that sort of thing, it is always lawful to film the police from a public place.  

As long as you’re in a public place or private place you have lawful access to, you are allowed to film the police.  They cannot arrest you just for the act of filming them.  

This is obviously a hot news topic.  There have been a lot of videos which have come out in the aftermath of police shootings or police brutality situations that have really changed the way people think about their relationship with the police and the way police use force in public.

Videotaping has become an essential tool for helping make sure that the police are acting ethically at all times, but I can tell you it’s not just a news topic. I myself have represented multiple people who were accused of one kind of wrongdoing or another by the police who were then exonerated because some bystander had the wherewithal and the presence of mind to get their cell phone out and take a video, even if the video wasn’t all the way complete.

This law makes it clear that you are not only allowed to do that, you’re almost encouraged to do that.

Public safety

film-police-rights

Here is more detail about some of the ways that you can help ensure the public safety by filming police when you see something suspicious going on.  And I’m encouraging you to do that because Penal Code section 148 and Penal Code section 69 make it clear that as long as you’re not otherwise interfering, it is absolutely your right to film the police, and I encourage you to do so.

In the meantime if you feel like you may have been the victim of police misconduct, or you know someone it was, or perhaps you were witness to police misconduct, I encourage you to please give our office a call.  We offer free consultations, and we’ll be happy to see what we can do to help.

Feb 252016
 

We’re doing a series of videos about new changes to law in the State of California that took effect on January 1st, 2016. Now one of the changes that got the most press when the bill was passed through the legislature and the governor signed it was this issue of the police’s ability to search […]

Dec 312015
 
The Dangers and Penalties of Drunk Driving in California

Even as lawmakers continue to pass much stricter DUI laws, drunk driving remains a major problem on America’s roads. According to recent numbers, nearly one-third of all traffic-related deaths involve an alcohol-impaired driver. Even here in California, where we have some of the toughest DUI laws in the country, hundreds of thousands of drivers are […]

Aug 042015
 

The issues regarding police misconduct, use of excessive force, and police brutality, continues to be a growing concern for myself and my colleagues in the criminal defense community. This article offers you some important tools and information on how you should respond to and report abuses of power by the police. The Ella Baker Center […]

 Posted by at 12:39 pm
Apr 222015
 
Prolonged Detention? Here's How to Handle It

  Yesterday’s important Supreme Court case in Rodriguez v. United States seems to be getting some broader media attention. I hope that continues. Most of all, I hope it encourages people to consider how they should respond if an officer is subjecting them to a prolonged detention. With that in mind, if you have been […]

 Posted by at 10:54 am