Article Image Laws need not apply


Our own Shelton arrested for photo radar activities (updated)

Written by Subject: Arizona's Top News
Opposing government has its risks.  Government doesn't like it for one.  Costing government money really torks them, especially in these lean times when the government is planning on that source of income to fund government.

So I come across this press release of an arrest made by the Scottsdale, Arizona Police Department of Freedom Phoenix's own Shelton.  Curious?   Read on:

The vicious criminal's mug shot
(courtesy of the Scottsdale Police Dept.).

Obstruction Of Government Operations

Event date: Thursday, August 28, 2008, from 12:00 AM to 11:59 PM

Date:     08/27/08
Time:     11:45 PM
Report #:     08-24282
Location:     6800 E. Shea Blvd.
Victim Info:    
Suspect Data:     Jason Shelton, W/M, 35 yrs old, Scottsdale resident


On Wednesday, August 27th at about 11:45 PM, SPD was called to the area of 6800 E. Shea Blvd. in reference to three individuals holding protest signs and blocking operation of the photo enforcement van at that location. Upon arrival, SPD officers arrested one individual for Refusing to Provide Truthful Name and Obstructing Government Operations. It was also learned the same individuals had done the identical thing at two other van locations earlier in the evening.

The City of Scottsdale, including the Police Department, respects and protects an individual’s right to stage and/or participate in a lawful demonstration. However, behavior such as the intentional obstruction of a contracted photo enforcement van’s operation is not lawful and subject to enforcement action.

I linked to the charges above, but here is the text [my bolding to emphasize] of the pertinent Arizona Revised Statutes:

13-2412. Refusing to provide truthful name when lawfully detained; classification

A. It is unlawful for a person, after being advised that the person's refusal to answer is unlawful, to fail or refuse to state the person's true full name on request of a peace officer who has lawfully detained the person based on reasonable suspicion that the person has committed, is committing or is about to commit a crime. A person detained under this section shall state the person's true full name, but shall not be compelled to answer any other inquiry of a peace officer.

B. A person who violates this section is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor.  (maximum penalty: 4 months + $750)

13-2402. Obstructing governmental operations; classification

A. A person commits obstructing governmental operations if, by using or threatening to use violence or physical force, such person knowingly obstructs, impairs or hinders:

1. The performance of a governmental function by a public servant acting under color of his official authority; or

2. The enforcement of the penal law or the preservation of the peace by a peace officer acting under color of his official authority.

B. This section does not apply to the obstruction, impairment or hinderance of the making of an arrest.

C. Obstructing governmental operations is a class 1 misdemeanor.  (6 months + $2,500)
There were three individual's picketing/ protesting a photo radar van west of Scottsdale Road at the intersection of 68th Street and Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale, Arizona.  The photo radar guy operating the van calls the cops.  Six units show up.  After asking what they are up to, Shelton asks if he is under arrest or being detained.  They say no.  He says am I free to leave?  They say no.  This goes on until they get tired of Shelton repeating the mantra AND refusing to provide his name.  So they arrest him. 
The other two guys with him cooperate.  They are not arrested, nor told they must leave.  They are simply told they are free to go.  Two of the cops acknowledge they are doing nothing illegal.  One of the other cops earlier had asked to see their "sign permit."  He left when told they were protesting using the only permit they needed ... the Constitution. 

The above comes from an interview I did with one of the two not arrested protesters.  The event was videotaped.   The battery ran out at some point before the cops left, but after Shelton's arrest.  It will be interesting to see how far away from the van they were.  It is stated by my interviewer at no time did they ever touch the van, nor talk to the occupant. 

The photo radar operator is a contract employee with a private company and not a sworn or certified peace officer, nor government employee.  The photo radar van and equipment is not considered a traffic control device under Arizona law. 

So the problem is, if the three were Obstructing Government Operations, why was only Shelton arrested?  Why were not the other two individuals told to leave upon their release and not further obstruct the operation of the photo radar van? 

No clearly, Shelton was arrested as was stated in front of witnesses and a camera at the time of refusing to provide his name.  That is not a crime unless one is under detention for suspicion of having committed a crime.  Clearly Shelton was not being detained for suspicion of a crime so he was under no legal obligation at that point to provide his name to police.  Clearly the Obstructing Government Operations was added later to justify the initial arrest, but as can be seen that does not apply either.  He has no interaction with either a public servant nor a peace officer with respect to the photo radar van.  Nor was violence nor physical force in evidence.  Hopefully the police report will be available tomorrow and shed some light of these questions.

People should be concerned because whole the City of Scottsdale claims they respect AND PROTECT  a person's Right to protest, in the next sentence they claim that the arrest was for interfering with "a contracted photo enforcement's van operation."   That may be true.  A demonstration may interfere with a contracted photo enforcement's van operation, but so far that is not against the law.  False arrest is a crime.  So is adding false charges.


Shelton refused to give his name and particulars the ENTIRE time he was there.  He was held in a concrete cell that was cold and completely empty...not even a bench to sit on.  A detainee in Scottsdale's Little Guantanamo.  He asked for a pen and paper.  When asked what for, he replied to write a writ of habeas corpus to see a judge. They told him no. 

He was transported to Old Town later that morning where he was placed into an identical room.  He was brought before a Judge James Blake about 9 AM [times are very approximate because Shelton had no access to a clock] on the SINGLE charge of Refusing to Provide Truthful Name.  He again refused to give his name and address to the judge saying he wanted to contact his lawyer first.  He was placed into a room with a phone and phone book but was too disoriented to find his lawyer's phone number, so they yanked him out and took him back to the cell.  Around 11AM he was brought before Judge Blake again.  The Judge let him go ON HIS OWN RECOGNIZANCE (OR)!!!!  How often does that happen?  A real desperado.

But the cop instead took him back to his cell telling the judge they were not through with him, and informed Shelton no way was he being let go until he had his photos and fingerprints taken.  Now understand, he had just been released OR by the judge at 11AM.  He didn't get out until over six hours later, and that was after the second charge of Obstructing Government Operations was added by a cop named Alexander.  He was brought before a second Judge Monty Morgan for the second charge and again ordered released OR. 

Shelton refused to cooperate in giving his fingerprints a second time (around 3PM) and the cop stomping down on his bare feet, breaking a toe to force compliance!  As an added aside, the photo Scottsdale PD released was an old booking photo... they did not use the one's they took...because Shelton was smiling even more than in the photo you see. They didn't like that.

We want the booking video, and the judge's hearing video and the former had better not conveniently disappear.

A chipin for Shelton's Defense Fund will be posted at some point.  Keep your eye peeled.  We already have $600 committed.  I was arrested for standing in front of a photo radar van two years ago holding a sign that warned in 12" letters, "Photo Radar."  I can tell you it runs at a bargain rate of about $3,000 to defend and that is only if a good defense attorney likes you.  Clearly for this to appear as a press release and in the Arizona Republic so fast the City of Scottsdale expects to make this a show trial to quickly discourage any more protests against their lucrative revenue source. 

And here is the real kicker.  According to the Arizona Republic article linked on Freedom's Phoenix, the City of Scottsdale is looking into charging the other two protesters --- Protecting their Right to demonstrate no doubt.  Now remember I told you video was being taken.  Guess who was NOT holding a protest sign?  Guess who was holding the camera?  Guess who was acting as a reporter for Freedom's Phoenix and  If you guessed Shelton for all three questions you were right.  And that means he was in no way interfering (obstructing) government operations, he was recording a demonstration for posterity.
The city has apparently gone onto private property while he was locked up, and stolen his car as well as witnessed by his neighbors. 

10 Comments in Response to

Comment by PresidentDon
Entered on:

If citizens don't elect Don Cordell as our President, more and more of our Bill of Rights will end, our present government and police know no end of trampling on our rights. Why is it against the law now to videotape the police in action, they tape us as proof we disobey the law, but do not want any proof they do wrong. Find my website and read #59 about police misbehavior. Just Google for Don Cordell, you'll see. I'm fighting this where I can make some Changes you can really believe in.

Comment by Alice Lillie
Entered on:
I'd like to know where to send a donation thru the snail-mail please.

E-mail me at

Please see my blog at

Comment by Hawkeye
Entered on:

Everyone keeps missing the real problem.
The real problem is with the useless Nazi Cops that will do anything they are told to do....including Murder of Innocent Americans.
These corrupt,low IQ cops are like robots.
They have no control of their own brains.
I know how to put a stop to it...all we have to do is make sure that their Children,Families,Clergy,and Neighbors see them in Action.
Give names,show faces and show just how willing these Nazi`s are to dishonor the oath they took to protect the Constitution from all enemies. Now they,the cops,are the enemies.
Lets find out how their children feel about the way their parents are helping to destroy the very country they,the Children,live in...and us.

Comment by Checkpoint USA
Entered on:
Many thanks to Shelton for standing up for his rights. I look forward to contributing to both his legal defense and legal offense fund.

Shelton - don't forget you only have six months to file a Notice of Claim against the Scottsdale Police before you can file a lawsuit...

Comment by morpheus
Entered on:

When are the sheeple going to wake up and smell the tyranny? Amen to you, brothers of liberty, you've inspired more decent folks to rise up and defend their freedom.

Comment by TheRockster
Entered on:

Raise money to help him sue the City of Scottsdale for denying his Constitutional rights and for false arrest. Sue the fascist b*st*rds for about a billion dollars. That's the only thing that will work.

Comment by Skipper
Entered on:
i love you all...

thank you soo much for being you and sticking up for true America..

Comment by RPr
Entered on:
looks like scottsdale pd will be paying a hefty sum of money to him for false arrest and police brutality.

but the 200 extra photo radar camera will make up for it

Comment by Ernest Hancock
Entered on:
By the end of today we will have a Chip-in up and running at the top of the site that will be for this project (oh yes,... project :)

I think this is the first time in 3 years, since the beginning of FreedomsPhoenix, that we have ever asked for contributions for ourselves. But I can't think of a better reason right now than the full support of one of our most active and effective editors doing their job peacefully and legally and being so abused by "The Man" without justification. Besides, the education for us all is going to be tremendous, and entertaining.

I just left the Denver Democratic Convention and am on my way to the Republican Convention and the Campaign for Liberty events. After those events are over I will take the time to tell you all of the things that were done (Video and Photos included). But, while several of us are busy making history far away from our base. I'm asking that you take the time to do what you can to make certain that we have the resources available to defend liberty by the time we get back late next week.

See you at the Arizona Breakfast Club Sept. 6th. Updates then on _everything_ :)

FreedomsPhoenix is taking this case on in defense of a proven activist that was clearly in the right. Here is where you can immediately help.
For immediate contributions

My long time friend, attorney, fellow freedom fighter and Criminal Defense Specialist Marc Victor has agreed to take on this case and FreedomsPhoenix will cover his fee (Marc is very expensive but very much worth it on cases exactly like this,... he is giving us the Freedom Fighter rate... which is far from free BTW)
" - Marc J. Victor

Marc Victor and I just decided to do our 8th FreedomSummit this coming March. ( We skipped a year. We were busy with that r3VOLution thing :)

Comment by Brock
Entered on:
Sorry, Shelton, but I just gotta feel sorry for the other detainees! :)

Whether they wanted it or not, whether they deserved it or not, they got an earful. Come to think of it, Shelton probably set them on the straight and narrow - pure defenders of truth, justice, and liberty!

You da man, Shelton. You da man.

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