A Temple University student’s civil rights lawyer in Philadelphia is going to have a lot on his plate in order to prove that his client’s First Amendment Rights were violated. According to sources, the plaintiff was taken into custody and charged with disorderly conduct after he used his cell phone to record law enforcement officials arresting several teenagers on January 23, 2011.
Although it is not clear why the dispute was broken up, the 24-year-old plaintiff was able to catch officers calling one adolescent a derogatory name, states the lawsuit. During the incident, authorities allegedly came up to the Temple student and told him to stop using his iPhone to capture footage. He was then taken to the police station, put in handcuffs and kept in a cell for almost one hour.
Once he was allowed to leave, police reportedly gave him back his cell phone but had erased the video.
This isn’t the first time that Philadelphia police have destroyed evidence of of their brutality that was recorded on a mobile device. Last March, two people were assaulted by officers after they documented what they perceived to be a violent arrest on their cell phones. Both individuals were arrested, charged with disorderly conduct and had their videos destroyed.
Given these events, the Philadelphia Police Commissioner released a memo telling city officers that they were not allowed to arrest people for recording them while on duty. Courts at all levels have held up similar rulings.
If you have civil rights claims that have been violated, then don’t be a victim. Instead, schedule a consultation with a civil rights lawyer in Philadelphia who will work hard on your behalf. The experienced and locally based attorneys at Levin and Zeiger Law Firm will assess your claim, try your case in court and help you recover damages you may be entitled to.
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