Video: Cops, Citizens and the Right to Record

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Lumumba Bandele has worked for years to equip citizens with the tools to monitor police activity.

Over the quarter century since a plumber named George Holliday stood on his Los Angeles balcony with a camcorder and taped the beating of motorist Rodney King, there has been no shortage of high-profile cases of police violence that did not involve video.

No one filmed Anthony Baez’s fatal 1994 encounter with Officer Francis Livoti. There wasn’t a camera in the stall at the 70th precinct in 1997 when Officer Justin Volpe sodomized Abner Louima with a broken broomstick. No one live-streamed the moment in 1999 when Amadou Diallo was gunned down in the vestibule of his Bronx building.

But ever since the death of Eric Garner on July 17, 2014, video has ignited an unprecedented debate about policing and race in the United States. Despite the obvious value these videos have had, some who film the police in action have faced arrest.

On Tuesday, BkLive’s Greg Johnson and I interviewed Malcolm X Grassroots Movement organizer Lumumba Bandele, Latino Justice PRLDEF president and general counsel Juan Cartegena and Bob Gangi, director of the Police Reform Organizing Project about a key New York case on the “right to record.” Watch:

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