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Thread: Seattle Photographer Awarded $8000

  1. #1
    Regular Member Mainsail's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
    Silverdale, Washington, USA

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    SEATTLE - A Seattle man has been paid $8,000 by the City of Seattle in a settlement over a wrongful arrest, the ACLU announced Thursday.

    The ACLU of Washington gave the following account:

    Bogdan Mohora, a 26-year-old substitute teacher and amateur photographer, was walking on Pike St. near Second Ave. in downtown Seattle last November when he saw Seattle Police arresting a man.

    Mohora stopped briefly and took two pictures of the arrest without speaking to or interfering with the officers.

    When a friend of the man being arrested asked to get copies of the photos, police asked Mohora to give them his camera.

    "I had my camera at scene taken away, had my satchel taken and placed in handcuffs and transported by a police car to the precinct," said Mohora.

    Mohora says without telling him why, the officers threw him into a holding cell at the west precinct for an hour.

    "Definitely upsetting to know that I could be pulled off the street, handcuffed for doing something perfectly legal," he said.

    Mohora said police told him he could be charged with disturbing the peace, provoking a riot or endangering an officer. He was never charged.

    "I knew I wasn't doing anything illegal at the time, which led me to pursue it further with the ACLU," said Mohora.

    The ACLU of Washington complained to the city and got Mohora the $8000 settlement.

    SPD also investigated the two officers, James Pitts and David Toner, and issued each a written reprimand.

    The ACLU says other photographers have reported being harassed by law enforcement since the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

    "The mere fact that someone is taking pictures is not evidence of a crime," said ACLU of Washington Legal Director Sarah Dunne

  2. #2
    State Researcher
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    May 2007
    Just a "wannabe" in Mtn. Top, Pennsylvania, USA

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    Justice served on some out of control thugs. Sweet! :celebrate

  3. #3
    Regular Member
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    Oct 2007
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    The ACLU does get it right sometimes. Thanks for posting the good news.

  4. #4
    State Researcher
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    Aug 2007
    Olympia, WA, ,

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    Woohoo! Maybe someday we can see a similar article about hassling a citizen OCing.

    The legal principles are the same. Not doing anything wrong is not doing anything wrong, guns, cameras or small furry animals (okay, there are laws about doing things with small furry animals in this state...)


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