Four years ago, Boston police officers arrested a man for videotaping them making an arrest in a public park.
They charged Simon Glik with felony wiretapping, disturbing the peace and aiding the escape of a prisoner – even though all he did was hold up a video camera – and the man they were arresting did not escape.
The charges were quickly dropped and Glik eventually filed a lawsuit for false arrest, claiming his First and Fourth Amendment rights had been violated.
The police officers filed a motion to dismiss his complaint on the basis on “qualified immunity,” which is their way of claiming they had no idea videotaping cops in public was completely legal.
A judge denied that motion and they appealed, which brought the issue back to court last week.
Now another judge will decide whether the cops will be granted qualified immunity, which would set a legal precedent that cops can basically make unlawful arrests of citizens who videotape them without fear of repercussions.