Georgia Deputies Arrest Man for Video Recording, then Harass him for Speaking to MediaBy Carlos Miller
Jul. 12, 2013
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Georgia deputies not only unlawfully arrested a man who was video recording from a public sidewalk, they blatantly harassed him as he was being interviewed by a local television crew about the initial incident.
Unfortunately, neither the news crew nor any local lawyers interviewed were able to publicly state what we can all see in these videos.
That the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office is doing nothing more but abusing their power through sheer intimidation tactics.
It started on June 2 when Matthew Haley was standing on a street corner video recording cars rolling through a stop sign.
He was approached by two deputies who demanded his identification because they found him suspicious.
But Haley refused to provide identification on the basis that he was not doing anything that would give them reasonable suspicion that he was committing a crime (other than holding his phone vertically as he records).
They quickly snatched the phone from him and arrested him on obstructing charges, even though they were the ones obstructing his First Amendment right to video record from a public street.
Then on July 4, as he was interviewed by a reporter from WRDW-TV in Augusta, deputies marched up to him and demanded his identification, even though it is not against the law to talk to reporters.