Old 12-08-2005, 02:32 PM   #26
Joe the Photog
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"Police officers aren't out looking to hassle photographers....."

Then why in this case did the LEO confiscate the film? I think most of us realize that in our hobby, we aregoing to attract attention sometimes. And an LEO might need to come and make sure we are not doing anything illegal. When he makes this realization though, he needs to leave us alone and go out and catch real, actual criminals who are up to no good.


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Old 12-08-2005, 03:54 PM   #27
willie6622
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Before coming to work for the Railroad, I was a Police Officer for over 9 years, ( 3 months short of having my pension vested!) & the most important tool involved in police work was COMMON SENSE. I think after looking at the whole circumstance, and it becoming pretty clear that you are dealing with a railfan, then the encounter is over. I believe confiscating the film violated his rights, and if he wanted to go through the time & trouble there are civil remedies for him to pursue.

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Last edited by willie6622; 12-08-2005 at 08:27 PM. Reason: added 1 item & spelling
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Old 12-08-2005, 08:03 PM   #28
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Willie6622 is right on the point-- There are civil remedies which can not only help get your film back, but action can be taken against officers who violate someone's civil rights, or break the law in other ways-- In this day and age, it is inconceiveable to me that LE personnel are still flying by the seat of their pants-- There is a VERY IMPORTANT factor called PROBABLE CAUSE-- Most actions an officer takes must be justified/supported by PC-- Laws vary from state to state, but generally, LE must have PC to confiscate anything, and again, generally, a receipt must be issued for property/items taken-- We were taught to issue a receipt even for alcohol taken from minors-- (Of course, when they also signed the receipt, it solidified our case)-- Unfortunately, there are still a lot of doo-dah (non-professional) officers out there who probably shouldn't be in that line of work-- And there is a good possibility these are the people who go out of their way to create or escalate an incident, confiscate film, and commit other no-nos to make themselves look good-- Best thing is to be cool and play the game-- You're at their mercy-- Hammer them on your turf, in the courts-- Regards, da Gator
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