Film the police

Florida police demonstrate their stalwart respect for the law they are supposedly enforcing:

Miami Beach police did their best to destroy a citizen video that shows them shooting a man to death in a hail of bullets Memorial Day. First, police pointed their guns at the man who shot the video, according to a Miami Herald interview with the videographer. Then they ordered the man and his girlfriend out the car and threw them down to the ground, yelling “you want to be fucking paparazzi?”

Then they snatched the cell phone from his hand and slammed it to the ground before stomping on it. Then they placed the smashed phone in the videographer’s back pocket as he was laying down on the ground. And finally, they took him to a mobile command center where they snapped his photo and demanded the phone again, then took him to police headquarters where they conducted a recorded interview with him before releasing him.

But what they didn’t know was that Narces Benoit had removed the SIM card and hid it in his mouth, which means the video survived.

People are going to have to get proactive with the police and force them to get used to the idea that all of their actions, legal and illegal, are going to be recorded. What everyone should start doing as a matter of course is pulling out their phone or camera and film, or even just pretend to film, every police officer they encounter no matter what he is doing. It is absurd that public employees should think they can assert that their official duties, which take place in public and are funded by the public, merit any sort of privacy.

And any policeman who seizes and destroys private property in the manner described should be charged with a misdemeanor for a first offense, a felony for a second.