So, it's open season on citizens filming sheriff deputies caught in the act of deceit, misconduct and hostile questioning.
Ask Bryan Payne (Facebook). Concerned about the way the Winnebago County Sheriff's Department were questioning his girlfriend, he decided to film the questioning with his phone.
This provoked retaliation, and a hostile and violent response by deputies who pretended Mr. Payne was attacking a deputy. [video is below] "Get your hands off me," yelled a deputy, fabricating a crime of the victim.
Another deputy then screamed, "do not fight," twice while attacking Payne, again fabricating a crime of the victim.
This is a crime by the deputies, is corruption and certainly grounds for a civil action.
Contacted by phone this morning, both the Winnebago County Sheriff's office and Winnebago County District Attorney's office refuse public comment on the policy of filming law enforcement and refer all public comment to voice-mails (the blow-off).
I asked the woman answering the phone at the Winnebago County District Attorney's office if I could get a comment on what the law is in Wisconsin filming law enforcement. She replied, "that's something we do not provide to citizens."
The law is an individual may video tape police as long as the taping does not obstruct the police.
The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press site states, in Wisconsin "An individual who is a party to either an in-person conversation or electronic communication, or who has the consent of one of the parties to the communication, can lawfully record it or disclose its contents, unless the person is doing so for the purpose of committing a criminal or tortious act. Wis. Stat. Ann. § 968.31 (West 2011)."
The ACLU site for photographers states, "Taking photographs of things that are plainly visible from public spaces is a constitutional right – and that includes federal buildings, transportation facilities, and police and other government officials carrying out their duties. Unfortunately, there is a widespread, continuing pattern of law enforcement officers ordering people to stop taking photographs from public places, and harassing, detaining and arresting those who fail to comply." (emphasis added)
Watching the video below indicates more evidence that those entrusted with police power need to be monitored in a free society, no matter how hostile some police are to the idea.
Writes Payne: "Was not resisting, but was standing by while the Winnebago County Sheriff's Department was questioning my girlfriend. The situation was then turned onto me because I was intimidating [the police] with the filming of my phone. You be the judge... resisting or not resisting."
Watch the video of police misconduct and deceitful machinations caught on tape: