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Michael Allison - 75 years in prison for recording public officials - Case has been thrown out

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posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 03:55 PM
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Strict eavesdropping law ruled unconstitutional in Illinois case


An Illinois judge ruled the state’s eavesdropping law unconstitutional as applied to a man who faced up to to 75 years in prison for secretly recording his encounters with police officers and a judge.

“A statute intended to prevent unwarranted intrusions into a citizen’s privacy cannot be used as a shield for public officials who cannot assert a comparable right of privacy in their public duties,” the judge wrote in his decision dismissing the five counts of eavesdropping charges against defendant Michael Allison.

“Such action impedes the free flow of information concerning public officials and violates the First Amendment right to gather such information,” he wrote.

The ruling is the most recent development raising questions about Illinois’ strict eavesdropping statute, which makes it a felony to use a device to audio record or overhear a conversation without the consent of all parties involved, regardless of the circumstances of the interaction.


Click link for remainder




posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 03:58 PM
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Since this example comes up time and again in police recording threads I thought I would share the info.

The judge threw out the case / dismissed the charges because the law was unconstiutional. This leaves one person left in Illinois facing prison time for the same "crime".

This ruling should clear that case in short order as well.

Currently the ACLU is challenging Illinois in the Federal Court system over this issue and it looks like a circuit court judge in Illinois used common sense and beat the Feds to the punch.

This case was dismissed back in September of 2011. Again I posted this so people dont keep using this as an example as well as those people who were asking about it and its outcome.
edit on 22-8-2012 by Xcathdra because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 04:05 PM
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This is awesome news. Hooray for the citizens in this case. Way to go Judge!
I hope that this case will set a precedence in future cases as well.
I'm still sad that the man was arrested to begin with.

S&F - Thanks for the update, XCat!
edit on 8/22/2012 by freakjive because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 04:10 PM
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I dont live in the US but I want to dance and sing


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where's the catch?
edit on 22-8-2012 by VoidHawk because: (no reason given)

edit on 22-8-2012 by VoidHawk because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 04:12 PM
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reply to post by Xcathdra
 


I think you mean ACLU and not UCLA right? ;-)



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 04:15 PM
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reply to post by Xcathdra
 


What's going on here? This is like 15 times in the last couple of years where common sense has trunped a trumped up charge. Could it be that things are a changing, however slowly it may be?

SnF op good post!



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 04:21 PM
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Rightly so, I say.

I record and video every interaction i have with the police, and when i get a phonecall from any 'official' I start the conversation with... "This conversation is being recorded for training purposes." Just like they do to us.



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 04:40 PM
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He should have been charged or prosecuted in the first place. These cases are still relevant to bring up in any debate.


edit on 22-8-2012 by RealSpoke because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 05:16 PM
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Originally posted by cwfusto
reply to post by Xcathdra
 


I think you mean ACLU and not UCLA right? ;-)


My bad.. my Lysdexia errr dyslexia kicked in.



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 05:17 PM
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Originally posted by inverslyproportional
reply to post by Xcathdra
 


What's going on here? This is like 15 times in the last couple of years where common sense has trunped a trumped up charge. Could it be that things are a changing, however slowly it may be?

SnF op good post!


I would like to think that the citizens are finally fed up to the point of challenging things instead of just taking it as they come and doing nothing about it.

Whatever the case may be I am not going to look a gift horse in the mouth.



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 05:31 PM
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Originally posted by AdamOver
Rightly so, I say.

I record and video every interaction i have with the police, and when i get a phonecall from any 'official' I start the conversation with... "This conversation is being recorded for training purposes." Just like they do to us.


The only thing I would suggest, coming from the law enforcement side of the equation, is to be familiar with what a temporary seizure is under the 4th and the Supreme court rulings on it.


When you are stopped by the police (not a voluntary contact) please keep in mind its a temporary seizure under the 4th amendment. I bring this up because once a person is detained / arrested the officer in question is responsible for the persons safety. It means normal movement / actions are restricted - IE walking around, manipulating objects (phone / keys / flashlights / etc etc etc).

While I have no issues if people want to record the encounter I explain the following.
* - I explain they can leave the phone on and recording however I request to see the phone to make sure it is in fact a phone (I tell them they can leave it on while I look at the phone) . I explain that there are cell phone guns out there and the reason for my request is to ensure the item is not a weapon. To date I have not had anyone get upset / challenge my request.

* - If its a traffic stop I do not allow them to record outside of their vehicle simply because of safety / liability.

* - If the contact deals with something other than a minor traffic issue (DWI / Criminal investigation / etc) I dont allow it from the people I am dealing with.

I have, depending on the situation, allowed them to continue recording audio by checking the phone and putting it in their shirt pocket / set somewhere close. Just depends on the situation.

Anyways... Just wanted to throw that out there that while its lawful to record the police, it can be restricted if you are a person directly involved and detained.

Just be smart about it and use communication when appropriate.



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 05:32 PM
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Originally posted by RealSpoke
He should have been charged or prosecuted in the first place. These cases are still relevant to bring up in any debate.


edit on 22-8-2012 by RealSpoke because: (no reason given)


Should have been charged / prosecuted or the person should NOT have been charged and prosecuted?



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 05:37 PM
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reply to post by Xcathdra
 


This is great news. Thanks for bringing something positive. It seems there are still some judges who take their responsibilities and their oaths seriously. I needed this nice bit of news today. That's one for the People.



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 05:49 PM
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There is no expectation of privacy at work. (The courts have established this.)
Your employer can record you while you are on the job

How can anyone paid in whole or in part by taxes claim that they are exempt from the same?

In fact I believe that they should be recorded it would cut down on their shoddy work ethic.



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 05:56 PM
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reply to post by VforVendettea
 


Thats because a private business is just that, private property. There are limits to what can be viewed by cameras at work though. Any location where a person has a reasonable expectation of privacy is exempt from those rulings and cannot place cameras in those areas.

IE an employer cannot place cameras in the bathroom, lockerrooms where a person changes their clothes etc etc etc.
edit on 22-8-2012 by Xcathdra because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 06:13 PM
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reply to post by Xcathdra
 


Things are a tad different over here (not much though). As far as I am concerned my taxes pay their wages, they are Public Servants.

I have been asked a few times to turn it off, and dependent on the situation, and the attitude of the officer I sometimes will. I also make it clear that all video is being uploaded to the cloud in real time.

Of course I am only talking about in public places. Private property is another matter, unless it's my private property.

I believe all officers should wear a camera at all times. I think that would weed out Pc Nazi quick enough. We are watched by thousands of cctv cameras all over London, and frankly it pisses me off when one of them tells me I cannot film them in a public place.

What is it they say, if you have nothing to hide..etc.

Whats good for the goose and all that...



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 06:40 PM
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Originally posted by AdamOver

I believe all officers should wear a camera at all times. I think that would weed out Pc Nazi quick enough. We are watched by thousands of cctv cameras all over London, and frankly it pisses me off when one of them tells me I cannot film them in a public place.


Ditto,
Public Place/Public Servant - You can film them.



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 11:35 PM
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reply to post by AdamOver
 


My apologies... I didnt bother to look at your profile where it states you are in England.

Sorry about that..



posted on Aug, 22 2012 @ 11:43 PM
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Originally posted by VforVendettea

Originally posted by AdamOver

I believe all officers should wear a camera at all times. I think that would weed out Pc Nazi quick enough. We are watched by thousands of cctv cameras all over London, and frankly it pisses me off when one of them tells me I cannot film them in a public place.


Ditto,
Public Place/Public Servant - You can film them.


There is newer technology out there than is being put through its paces to address this issue.

Dash cameras in cruiser.
Dual camera systems that has one camera looking forward and one camera looking backwards (where a person in custody is sitting).
Audio on the officer as well as in the car for the dash / rear camera systems.

In addition -
Tasers - Newer Taser models have audio as well as video reocrding that activate the moment the taser is turned on.
Body cameras w/ audio for the officers.
Cameras / audio recording setup that fits to sunglass type setup.
Audio / camera specifically designed for duty weapons (being tested out in the California area).

While the technology is important its not 100% fullproof. There will be situations where body language / actions are witnessed by the officer but not apparent on video / audio.

An example - NSFW - graphic image of a person being shot and killed.

Dashcam video - 1st Officer



An example - NSFW - graphic image of a person being shot and killed.

Dashcam video - 2nd officer


If all you saw was the 2st dashcam footage what conclusion could you come to?
After watching the 2nd video what conclusion could you come to?

Here is an example of a body camera -



Helmet Camera - Swat



Taser Camera



Head mounted cameras


In the last video it talks about cameras going live, where supervisors can watch a live feed. Highway Patrol in several states have a similar system for their dash cams. Supervisors can patch into the car cameras to see whats going on. Some of the newer dash cameras have a pre record function on them.

Essentially the dash cam (digital versions) constantly records regardless of whats going on. If an officer activates the camera / emergency equipment (auto activates camera recording) it will actually include up to 30 seconds of video prior to the officer activating the system.

While the tech nology is advancing people may wonder why it takes so long to become common place. Cost of the items aside there must be an established history / set of rules in place that the courts / legal system will accept. That criteria falls back under the collection of evidence, who has access to the information, how is it retrieved, how is the information stored etc etc etc.
edit on 23-8-2012 by Xcathdra because: (no reason given)



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