Local Photographer Harassed by Police, Threatened with Arrest
Here are the images: Can you identify the car?
Here is the report I filed:
After Pridefest, I started walking around town to find where my bus had been moved to, as Civic Center Station was shut down. I noticed that a street was blocked off and that they were doing a photo shoot for a car. I started taking pictures and was immediately confronted by members of the photo crew who told me I wasn't allowed to take pictures while walking by and that they had a permit to use the area. I moved to the end of the street to the sidewalk where they did not have jurisdiction and I continued to take pictures of the scene.
I was followed by members of the camera crew who kept blocking my shots. Soon, a plainclothes officer came to me and started being very confrontive towards me and invading my personal space, causing me to back away. She grabbed for my camera but I pulled it away before she could obtain it. I said "Don't touch my property!" She told me that I couldn't be there and that I had to move and that I was breaking the law and I quickly responded that as a citizen I had a right to be on public property and take pictures. She told me I had to go across to the other side of the street because this side was also, somehow, closed to the public. I asked her if she was a member of law enforcement and she said yes, which she had not told me prior to my asking. I asked for her card, which she refused to give me. I then asked for her number, which she also refused to give me. And I said, well then please provide evidence that you are with the police department. She yelled at me "Listen Kid, I have put myself on the line for this country, you haven't.". Then she told me to leave. I kept asking for her card and reminded her that she was required by law to give me her number. She yelled "Do you want me to go get my badge and uniform? I have them in the car" and I said that I only needed the number. She said "Here, have my number." and so I wrote it down and then she said "Write it all over, wherever you want." Her badge number was 10733
I crossed the street and continued taking pictures and less than a minute had passed before I was harassed by yet another member of the police department. He told me that I was on "city property" and not "public property" but I told him that the sidewalk was public property and that he was infringing on my rights. I asked if I was being detained and he said "No. If you don't leave though, I'll put cuffs on you", threatening me with arrest! I asked for his card, and he said no. I told him he was required by law to give it to me, and then he conceded to doing so. His name and badge number are:
David M. Bernardini
Traffic Operations/Highway/Hazmat Unit
I didn't want to get arrested, so I went back to Pridefest. I came back approximately 10 minutes later with three witnesses (who I did not get the contact information of but I told to call my parents if I got arrested) so that the officers could no longer harass or threaten to arrest me for "loitering". Employees of the photo shoot came over and said "Why are you back? You need to stop taking pictures. We can't do the shoot if you are taking pictures". And I said "I'm exercising my rights as a citizen to take pictures from public property." and they claimed they had privacy rights since they closed off the street. I corrected them and they said "Do you want me to call the officer over here" and I said "No, but I'm also not going to stop taking pictures. Your first officer was extremely rude to me and tried to take my property. I'm standing up for my rights here". By this time, they were getting extremely frustrated, saying things like "you're such a little shit", you suck, and "the parade is over there", a derogatory comment about my assumed sexuality. The woman was fairly tall (maybe an inch or two taller than me) and was a brunette. The man had a beard.
All of this occurred on Broadway and another cross street, which I do not remember but I believe it was 16th or 15th, right next to the Starbucks. I can show you the location if you want. It occurred on Sat Jun 21.
I await your reply,