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Are helmet cams illegal?

Old 07-28-11, 06:12 PM
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Are helmet cams illegal?

Check out the story on criminal charges against citizen cam users.
https://reason.com/archives/2010/12/0...war-on-cameras
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Old 07-28-11, 06:21 PM
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Are helmet cams illegal?

No. Public space is just that, public, thus there can be no presumption of privacy (to be invaded).
Of course that doesn't mean that a public official won't try to thwart any attempts to record them in public.
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Old 07-28-11, 06:50 PM
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Definitely not illegal. That doesn't mean that some overzealous cop and/or prosecutor might not try to impose a miscarriage of justice against someone using them.
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Old 07-28-11, 09:48 PM
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Wiretapping Laws: State by State
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Old 07-28-11, 09:56 PM
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Originally Posted by gdhillard
Check out the story on criminal charges against citizen cam users.
https://reason.com/archives/2010/12/0...war-on-cameras
No, but in some places both the LEO's and DA's office will try to enforce non-existent laws, or misrepresent existing laws.

Here are some quotes from the article that I found interesting:

Asked about the Georgetown incident on a radio call-in program, D.C. Police Chief Kathy Lanier said the city has no policy against photographing police officers, but she also defended the cops, explaining that they don’t like being photographed because “we can have our pictures end up on all sorts of websites, and that can be dangerous for us.”
Hmm, if they behaved as a police force and not as thugs then they wouldn't have to worry.

“There’s no chain of custody with these videos,” Pasco says. “How do you know the video hasn’t been edited? How do we know what’s in the video hasn’t been taken out of context? With dashboard cameras or police security video, the evidence is in the hands of law enforcement the entire time, so it’s admissible under the rules of evidence. That’s not the case with these cell phone videos.”
Oh, like the police have never lied under oath? Or have "lost" footage that showed them in a bad light?

But Carlos Miller, proprietor of Photography Is Not a Crime, says that’s no reason to prevent people from taking video in the first place. “If a video has been altered or edited, that’s a pretty easy thing to discern,” he says. “That’s going to come out in an investigation. And just because a video has only been in police custody doesn’t mean it hasn’t been altered or edited. Police can edit videos too.”
Exactly, usually it can be detected if the video has been altered in any way. And how do we know that the police haven't edited the video or taken sequences out of context?

This is not the first time a police camera in Prince George’s County has malfunctioned at a critical time. In 2007 Andrea McCarren, an investigative reporter for the D.C. TV station WJLA, was pulled over by seven Prince George’s County police cars as she and a cameraman followed a county official in pursuit of a story about misuse of public funds. In a subsequent lawsuit, McCarren claimed police roughed her up during the stop, causing a dislocated shoulder and torn rotator cuff. McCarren won a settlement, but she was never able to obtain video of the incident. Prince George’s County officials say all seven dashboard cameras in the police cruisers coincidentally malfunctioned.
All SEVEN dashboard cams "breaking down" at the same time seems a bit much.

“Letting people record police officers is an extreme and intrusive response to a problem that’s so rare it might as well not exist,” Pasco insists. “It would be like saying we should do away with DNA evidence because there’s a one-in-a-billion chance that it could be wrong. At some point, we have to put some faith and trust in our authority figures.”
How is it "intrusive" to record the police doing their job in a public place?!? And how is it that a person who is pulled over by the cops has no "expectation of privacy" but the cop does?

Originally Posted by El Duderino X
Are helmet cams illegal?

No. Public space is just that, public, thus there can be no presumption of privacy (to be invaded).
Of course that doesn't mean that a public official won't try to thwart any attempts to record them in public.
It shouldn't be and in most places it isn't, but some cops and DA's will try to tell you that it is.

Originally Posted by 2wheelcommute
Definitely not illegal. That doesn't mean that some overzealous cop and/or prosecutor might not try to impose a miscarriage of justice against someone using them.
See above.
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Old 07-28-11, 10:00 PM
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No more than a hand held camera, I'm sure
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Old 07-29-11, 08:43 AM
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It's certainly telling how much many law enforcement officers don't want their actions caught on tape. Yet not only citizens but police departments themselves are installing cameras more and more... and more and more videos of abuse are finding their way onto the Internet and into courtrooms. Small victory for the citizen IMO; and a step in the right direction.

To use the police's favorite phrase: "If you have nothing to hide..."

Wiretapping laws *should* be irrelevant because you aren't recording private conversations with expectations of privacy. However that doesn't mean a dumb yokel won't try to charge you and make you get a lawyer.

Last edited by dolanp; 07-29-11 at 08:46 AM.
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Old 07-29-11, 09:17 AM
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this is a disturbing trend, when law enforcement and even the courts don't want citizens making records of their actions, somethings smells fishy.
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Old 07-29-11, 10:05 AM
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US-PD want to suppress any new viral Rodney King videos.
while they go extrajudicial, on a suspect, before trial.
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Old 07-29-11, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by dolanp
It's certainly telling how much many law enforcement officers don't want their actions caught on tape. Yet not only citizens but police departments themselves are installing cameras more and more... and more and more videos of abuse are finding their way onto the Internet and into courtrooms. Small victory for the citizen IMO; and a step in the right direction.

To use the police's favorite phrase: "If you have nothing to hide..."

Wiretapping laws *should* be irrelevant because you aren't recording private conversations with expectations of privacy. However that doesn't mean a dumb yokel won't try to charge you and make you get a lawyer.

Exactly, I have to laugh when I'm watching the show Cops. And the cops on it always use that line, it's amazing how many times that it works. Which is why as I've said in other threads that I keep my pannier bags locked. So that if I am pulled over the LEO should be able to see that my bags are locked and that I cannot access anything stored in them while we are talking. So therefore he wouldn't have probable cause to search my pannier bags.

Sadly, the only bag that I cannot lock is my top bag, as all it has is a drawstring to close it.
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Old 07-29-11, 12:31 PM
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Originally Posted by pallen
this is a disturbing trend, when law enforcement and even the courts don't want citizens making records of their actions, somethings smells fishy.
Yeah, nothing breeds trust like having things done in secret.
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Old 07-29-11, 06:32 PM
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Our country going to hell.

Our Constitution's intent was to protect the citizen from the government and from others infringing on our rights. Those type laws are passed to protect the government and its ability to control the citizens not the individual from the government.
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Old 07-31-11, 10:38 AM
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Cameraman was arrested Friday by Suffolk County police while trying to videotape a police scene.

https://newyork.cbslocal.com/2011/07/...ne-in-bohemia/

Datz said he was standing on a public street with other pedestrians when the officer walked up to him.
“I tried to be as respectful as I could to the sergeant, asking him where he wanted me to go to film the scene and he basically told me I couldn’t film it anywhere,” Datz said. “There was nowhere that he would allow the incident to be filmed.”
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Old 07-31-11, 11:30 AM
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Here you go. this one the cop is in trouble over.
https://www.lvrj.com/news/police-inqu...126438953.html

Another where the cops managed to kill the guy.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...man-death.html

Video holds people accountable. Like I said, our country is goign to hell when the police can arrest you for video of their actions.
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Old 07-31-11, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by 1nterceptor
Cameraman was arrested Friday by Suffolk County police while trying to videotape a police scene.

https://newyork.cbslocal.com/2011/07/...ne-in-bohemia/

Datz said he was standing on a public street with other pedestrians when the officer walked up to him.
“I tried to be as respectful as I could to the sergeant, asking him where he wanted me to go to film the scene and he basically told me I couldn’t film it anywhere,” Datz said. “There was nowhere that he would allow the incident to be filmed.”
Sadly, in the first link there were no shortage of people willing to blame the victim.
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Old 07-31-11, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Northwestrider
No more than a hand held camera, I'm sure
The cases I've heard of in the US have hinged on the audio recording that's normally included with the video. Some states have statutes that can be interpreted as prohibiting audio recording even in public places without the consent of everyone being recorded.

To avoid running into such legal issues, it would be good if the helmet video cameras had an easy way to disable the audio recording.
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Old 07-31-11, 11:25 PM
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*I've made my views on the pigs more than amply clear, so I won't go into detail. But I have a helmet cam and It is turned on every single minute I'm on my bike. Got a pen camera, too, I can drop it into a shirt pocket and have backup if I get pulled over and the "nice young man" wants my helmet-cam off.

I just don't trust them. At all.
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Old 07-31-11, 11:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Captain Blight
*I've made my views on the pigs more than amply clear, so I won't go into detail. But I have a helmet cam and It is turned on every single minute I'm on my bike. Got a pen camera, too, I can drop it into a shirt pocket and have backup if I get pulled over and the "nice young man" wants my helmet-cam off.

I just don't trust them. At all.
Or, AHEM, you would like to get a pen cam and perhaps put it into your shirt...right?
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Old 08-01-11, 03:30 AM
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Originally Posted by prathmann
The cases I've heard of in the US have hinged on the audio recording that's normally included with the video. Some states have statutes that can be interpreted as prohibiting audio recording even in public places without the consent of everyone being recorded.

To avoid running into such legal issues, it would be good if the helmet video cameras had an easy way to disable the audio recording.
Yes, it's the audio portion that requires consent.
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Old 08-01-11, 04:55 AM
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Originally Posted by gdhillard
Are helmet cams illegal?
Only with the fashion police.


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