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Man Charged With HIPAA Violations For Video Taping Police

Unknown Lamer posted about a year and a half ago | from the being-a-jerk-is-not-a-prosecutable-crime dept.

Privacy 620

Bob the Super Hamste writes "The St. Paul Pioneer Press is reporting that Andrew Henderson was recording Ramsey County sheriff's deputies frisking a bloody-faced man, who was then loaded into an ambulance by paramedics. Then sheriff's deputy Jacqueline Muellner approached Henderson and confiscated his video camera, stating, 'We'll just take this for evidence,' which was recorded on Henderson's cell phone. On October 30th, Henderson went to the Arden Hills sheriff's office to retrieve his video camera, where he was told where he would have to wait to receive his camera back. A week later, Henderson was charged with obstruction of legal process and disorderly conduct, with the citation stating, 'While handling a medical/check the welfare (call), (Henderson) was filming it. Data privacy HIPAA violation. Refused to identify self. Had to stop dealing with sit(uation) to deal w/Henderson.' In mid November, Henderson went back to the sheriff's office to attempt to retrieve his camera and get a copy of the report when Deputy Dan Eggers refused. ... Jennifer Granick, a specialist on privacy issues at Stanford University Law School, states that the alleged violation of HIPAA rules by Andrew Henderson is nonsense, stating, 'There's nothing in HIPAA that prevents someone who's not subject to HIPAA from taking photographs on the public streets, HIPAA has absolutely nothing to say about that.'" The article notes that the Deputy in question basically told the guy he was arrested for being a "buttinski" and recording someone in the midst of a violent mental health breakdown. Supposedly the footage was deleted from the camera while in police custody.

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620 comments

sigh (5, Insightful)

RearNakedChoke (1102093) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534553)

For fraks sake. Will SCOTUS please making a damn ruling that absolutely allows for any and all recording of police officers in a public place no matter what? This is getting ridiculous.

Re:sigh (5, Insightful)

SJHillman (1966756) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534591)

They're already making up bullshit to get away with it... what makes you think a SCOTUS ruling will stop it? They may have well charged the guy with poaching polar bears... it would have made as much sense as claiming a HIPAA violation to get him to stop video taping.

Re:sigh (4, Funny)

Sulphur (1548251) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534791)

They're already making up bullshit to get away with it... what makes you think a SCOTUS ruling will stop it? They may have well charged the guy with poaching polar bears... it would have made as much sense as claiming a HIPAA violation to get him to stop video taping.

This here poaching a pola bears has to stop. Yo in a heap a troulble heah.

Re:sigh (5, Insightful)

ohnocitizen (1951674) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534795)

We need legislation that not only enshrines the right to record any and all public officials, but adds severe consequences to the destruction of evidence.

Re:sigh (5, Insightful)

DragonTHC (208439) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535025)

The police have been terrified ever since Rodney King was filmed getting his beating.

Let's not forget, today's police are not Andy Griffith. Their job can be dangerous, and they're only human. That doesn't mean they have a right to privacy in their work. It doesn't mean they can violate their use of force policies because no one is watching. People are watching. That just means they need to follow the rules too. Understood they're not happy about it.

Re:sigh (1, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534847)

Based on my experience with HIPAA, it's very likely the officer thought he was correct.

Re:sigh (5, Informative)

dcollins (135727) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535077)

It's common knowledge that police go trolling through law books looking for anything that sounds remotely charge-able against people they don't like.

FTA: Deputy Dan Eggers in a recording, speaking to the victim: "They felt like you were being a 'buttinski' by getting that camera in there and partially recording what was going on in a situation that you were not directly involved in."

That, combined with destruction of the evidence, does not remotely sound like honest belief in a HIPAA violation by an expert person knowledgeable in medical-industry practices.

Re:sigh (4, Insightful)

Derekloffin (741455) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534629)

I agree, although sadly they'd probably find another BS reason to arrest people over this. I just wish these cops and prosecutors wouldn't keep proving they lack integrity like this. Sigh.

Re:sigh (0)

logjon (1411219) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534651)

And we're all funding it, to boot.

Re:sigh (4, Interesting)

Scutter (18425) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534703)

Stop voting for the prosecutors who lack integrity. I blame voters who don't pay any attention to the candidates for whom they vote. They vote for whichever name sounds the best.

What about my privacy? (3, Interesting)

alexander_686 (957440) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534709)

So, let me ask the flip question – one that I have been struggling with. Should public officials have privacy while on duty? Probably not. But what about citizens? How do we protect their rights?

If I were Rodney King I would want my arrest to be videotaped. Check on the power of the police – that fine.

A good phone should be able to eavesdrop on the private interview between suspect and cop.

And, what if I did not want the tape to be posted? Maybe I did something shameful and don’t want it to be public? Maybe something that is implied to be shameful – like a false arrest. Let’s say you were pulled over for a moving violation in a red light district? A little careful editing and it could look very bad.

Re:What about my privacy? (5, Insightful)

hondo77 (324058) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534775)

Maybe I did something shameful and don't want it to be public?

Then you shouldn't have done it in public.

Re:What about my privacy? (4, Interesting)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535043)

It's noted that the person being arrested was having a mental health breakdown. Photographing people having that and then posting it online is usually classified as "cyber bullying".

Re:What about my privacy? (1)

PRMan (959735) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534805)

Welcome to the news.

Re:What about my privacy? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534817)

All of that is a matter of public record already. Who was arrested and why, etc. If it was a false arrest, or doctored footage then privacy is the wrong question to ask in both cases.

Re:What about my privacy? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534837)

The answer to bad speech is more speech, not silence.

Re: What about my privacy? (5, Informative)

Furmy (854336) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534841)

If you are in public you have should have no expectation of privacy. If someone edits and shares the video to change the story then that could be grounds for libel.

Re:What about my privacy? (4, Informative)

geekoid (135745) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534903)

Are you in public? then your right to privacy does not include filming you about your business.
That is ANYBODY.

"And, what if I did not want the tape to be posted? "
Too damn bad.
"Maybe I did something shameful and don’t want it to be public?"
Too damn bad.

" A little careful editing and it could look very bad."
and now you change the subject. That would be lying or fraud. We have laws for that already.

Re:What about my privacy? (5, Insightful)

ezakimak (160186) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534909)

There is *no privacy* in a *public* place. By definition. For any party, anywhere. How you act in public, witnesses around or not, is open to public knowledge--be it praiseworthy or ridicule-worthy.

Furthermore, if they first claim it was being taken in as evidence, then later they *deleted* the file--doesn't that constitute destruction of evidence (the source recording) on the police department's part? (unless they used full chain-of-custody and a data-forensics lab to copy the file?) Not to mention the obvious violation of his private information as well--I highly doubt they bothered to get a search warrant before perusing his phone's contents.

Re:What about my privacy? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534935)

You have no privacy or expectation of privacy in a public place. This is supported by well established case law. That's why your employer can deploy security camera's everywhere except changing rooms and restrooms, and why the government can video monitor anything that happens on the street or in your yard.

The police should have no more expectation of privacy than anyone else... unfortunately they have the power(if not the actual right) to punish people who violate their sense of a non-existent right to not be recorded.

Re:What about my privacy? (1)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534995)

I wonder... can the editing be considered libel?

Also... I don't see why a false arrest is shameful, especially when it's shown to be false. If you act like a jackass in public, somebody video tapes you and posts it, something in the back of your mind should be wondering choices & consequences. In fact, it's better that way cause hopefully you won't do it again. So we can say it's a good thing that people can video tape you in public, keeps the riff-Raff in line and pants on.

OMG Teh Socalsim! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534723)

For fraks sake. Will SCOTUS please making a damn ruling that absolutely allows for any and all recording of police officers in a public place no matter what?

But that would be Socialism!

Re:sigh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534863)

For fraks sake. Will SCOTUS please making a damn ruling that absolutely allows for any and all recording of police officers in a public place no matter what? This is getting ridiculous.

You realize SCOTUS doesn't have the power to just swoop down out of nowhere and make rulings about whatever catches their fancy, right? They have to have a case brought before them.

Re:sigh (5, Informative)

MobyDisk (75490) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535013)

They have.

One state supreme court struck down a law making recording police officers illegal [slashdot.org] . And the Department of Justice wrote a letter to the police departments telling them to knock it off. [slashdot.org] And several courts have repeatedly thrown out [slashdot.org] these cases [slashdot.org] already.

Re:sigh (5, Informative)

MrKevvy (85565) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535029)

SCOTUS doesn't need to make a ruling upholding a constitutional right, as the constitution already does.

The Justice Department affirmed this strongly when they sent a letter to the Baltimore PD [wired.com] which asserted that it is a first amendment right to record, and a violation of the fourth and fourteenth amendments to access and/or destroy such recordings without due process and/or a warrant.

This made national headlines and so it's assured every police department in the U.S. is well aware of this.

The victim should be contacting the DOJ and ACLU in short order.

Re:sigh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42535055)

It's not "no matter what". Film all you want as long as you're not interfering. These fools with phones often get with 5' of a situation after being told to "stand back" and not being told "stop filming". Majority of complaint I've seen the filmers are being legitimate problem. If you're little screen is too fuzzy from 10 years away, too bad.

Of course there are situations where cops are telling people to stop videoing, but this case doesn't sound like it, if "dad to stop dealing with sit(uation) to deal w/Henderson" is true.

Some recordings should be restricted ... (1)

perpenso (1613749) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535059)

Some recordings should be restricted to a degree. For example an ongoing barricaded hostage situation where the police are about to make an entry to conduct a rescue. A recording should not be broadcast or otherwise shared in a live or near-live manner. The hostage taker could see what is going on outside. Once the hostage situation is resolved then broadcasting/sharing should be allowed.

Hahahah (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534555)

hahahahahahah dumbass

Re:Hahahah (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534613)

Still not as evil as Ubuntu £inux.

Destruction of evidence and private property. (4, Insightful)

MozeeToby (1163751) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534559)

Supposedly the evidence was deleted from the camera while in police custody.

Fixed that for ya.

Re:Destruction of evidence and private property. (4, Interesting)

Mitreya (579078) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534745)

Supposedly the evidence was deleted from the camera while in police custody.

Fixed that for ya.

Well, at least he can no longer be charged without any evidence, right? Or are they trying to charge him with HIPAA violation without a video that he allegedly recorded?

Seriously, when did it become acceptable that evidence can just disappear in police custody? I know it is not the same as 11 (or was it 17?) police cruiser cameras malfunctioning simultaneously but still.

Re:Destruction of evidence and private property. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534761)

Do as I say, not as I do. As long as government is founded on coercive authority, "do as I say, not as I do" will forever be the key premise of government (i.e. you can't have your cake and eat it too.)

Re:Destruction of evidence and private property. (4, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534873)

Supposedly the evidence was deleted from the camera while in police custody.

This is obviously a case of the police not knowing the law (shocker, I know). I think the officers meant well enough -- I mean, how would you like the worst day of your life being thrown up on YouTube by some paparazzi? But they handled this very badly. I would be willing to bet that if the police had simply approached the guy and said, "Look man, this guy's had a rough night and he doesn't need video of it showing up on the internet. Unless you think there's a crime happening here, could you please delete the footage? I think this guy deserves a little respect," that the guy would have complied. Unless of course he's a total douche, in which case that's what disorderly conduct is for, and the police, while still wrong, could have simply taken him to jail, had his possessions surrendered, and then deleted the footage and released him after booking.

There are good ways, bad ways, and terrible ways, to handle these sorts of issues. I think it's obvious here which one they picked.

Re:Destruction of evidence and private property. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534983)

tampered with, destroyed, deleted, obstructed by conspiracy you say?

In a manner in which they have institutionally committed multiple felonies that would be eligible under RICO you say?

Yeah, good luck getting a fucking prosecutor to do their job.

The US needs a citizen commission of prosecutors eligible to bypass prosecutorial 'discretion' with all of the normal assistance and good faith a defendant representing themself would get.

what a surprise (1, Insightful)

vlm (69642) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534587)

What a surprise, cops are bullies, liars, and thugs. That's not exactly "news".

Quick where's Dave Schroeder? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534609)

He needs to stop licking cop boots to come defend their actions!

Re:what a surprise (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534689)

Not news, but always worth reminding people.

Re:what a surprise (2)

mlw4428 (1029576) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534701)

What a surprise, SOME cops are bullies, liars, and thugs. That's not exactly "news".

Fixed that for ya.

Re:what a surprise (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534897)

Right.. and how many of the rest of them look the other way, actively cover up, or otherwise tighten up on the thin blue line? Its almost like theres a phrase in the law for that: accessory after the fact.

Where is the outrage from law enforcement over such flagrant abuse of authority? Where are the criminal charges for the so-called police officers at fault?

Re:what a surprise (3, Insightful)

Damastus the WizLiz (935648) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534809)

Not all cops are bullies, liars, or thugs. I have personally known some very nice ones. Unfortunately all jobs done by people get good and bad ones alike. Yes there are some bad cops. There are also alot of officers who just have to put up with bad people all day. I know its a pipe dream but I wish people would stop making horrible generalizations just because they see one bad egg. You might do well to remember that police officers go out every day all over world with the prospect of not making it home that night. All in the name of protecting people like you and me.

Re:what a surprise (5, Insightful)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534861)

You might do well to remember that police officers go out every day all over world with the prospect of not making it home that night.

So do taxi drivers. Seriously, it's more dangerous than being a cop.

But if you get a bad taxi driver, you generally don't tip or don't pay.

Get a bad cop and they'll ruin your life.

See the difference?

Re:what a surprise (5, Insightful)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534907)

Oh and further than that.

Pretty much every time a police misconduct case comes up in the news, it seems that it always involved a hefty dose of cops covering for other cops.

I think the number of bad cops is quite high.

Re:what a surprise (3, Insightful)

Synerg1y (2169962) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535047)

Part of the problem I think is a lack of accountability, too many cases come down to the cop's word vs. the defendant's and the cop's is taken without question landing innocent people into the system. I think the issue can easily be solved as somebody on here said in a discussion a while ago by installing cameras in ALL police cars. An extreme step past that would be to track the officer themselves, but there's gotta be a better way than that. The reason for all this: they hold a position of power that they've proven time and time and again they're capable of abusing, those in power should be held accountable, even if it's over the wrongful arrest of a single individual. Imagine being "that" guy, not a good day indeed.

Re:what a surprise (2)

geekoid (135745) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534945)

No.
The vast majority are not bullies, liars or thugs.

"Science flies us to the moon. Blind belief flies make us irrational." - Victor Stenger paraphrase
Blind beliefs such as:
"What a surprise, cops are bullies, liars, and thugs."

Please think.

Lucky bastard. (2)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534595)

He's set.

I just wish he could take the cops houses as well as a bunch of taxpayer money.

Re:Lucky bastard. (1)

masternerdguy (2468142) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534639)

Yep. This guy is going to make some serious money when he sues for wrongful prosecution.

destruction of evidence (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534597)

> confiscated his video camera, stating, 'We'll just take this for evidence,'
> Supposedly the footage was deleted from the camera while in police custody.

So... where is the "destruction of evidence" charge?

Re:destruction of evidence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534989)

> confiscated his video camera, stating, 'We'll just take this for evidence,' > Supposedly the footage was deleted from the camera while in police custody.

So... where is the "destruction of evidence" charge?

Some animals are more equal than others.

Especially if one of them is a pig.

Tampering with evidence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534599)

If he was actually charged with a crime, someone tampered with the evidence while it was under police control.

HIPAA regards medical records not police busts (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534605)

Give a large man with a small brain a gun and some authority and here's what happens.

Re:HIPAA regards medical records not police busts (3, Funny)

the_B0fh (208483) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534737)

Errr, except that it was a woman...

Give an AC the ability to post but not read and here's what happens... :P

Re:HIPAA regards medical records not police busts (1)

ThisIsSaei (2397758) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534781)

Man can be used in a gender-neutral way. Nit-picking isn't good.

Re:HIPAA regards medical records not police busts (1, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534967)

How else do you get rid of nits?

Re:HIPAA regards medical records not police busts (0)

the_B0fh (208483) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535021)

Apparently you give it to Saei :P

Mix (3, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534627)

I disagree and think that police should be allowed to be filmed in public places at all times, to help keep them honest.

At the same time, if I were being loaded into an ambulance by police, in the midst of a violent mental health breakdown, I would really appreciate it if the police stopped people from filming me. That's not something you want out spread around the internet.

Re:Mix (5, Insightful)

MBGMorden (803437) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534653)

At the same time, if I were being loaded into an ambulance by police, in the midst of a violent mental health breakdown, I would really appreciate it if the police stopped people from filming me. That's not something you want out spread around the internet.

Freedom isn't always convenient. Hell some people enjoy very nice lives under a dictatorship (particularly the dictator themselves). Doesn't mean its right. What you're effectively saying is that people should have their speech restricted even if its the truth so long as someone else finds that speech embarrassing or offensive.

Do you not know the road that takes us down?

Re:Mix (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534729)

I'm totally putting cameras in your bathroom and bedroom now.

Re:Mix (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534757)

No, he's saying that we should expect common decency from our fellow man, but, since people have decided to think in Black and White and act like "buttinski's", never acknowledging that reasonable limits can be self enforced by individuals, he's willing to accept that maybe we don't deserve the freedom we say is so important.

Remember its not just the government who can stomp all over the individual...other individuals can do it to. Unfortunately we're so quick to point out absolute wrong of the government, that we ignore our responsibility not to be an ass in a functioning society. Just because the police are wrong doesn't make the guy with the camera right.

Re:Mix (5, Insightful)

MBGMorden (803437) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534855)

Being an asshole is legal, and should be. Freedom when it gets right down to it is all about doing things other people don't like. If every action you perform is in complete compliance with society's accepted definition of normal then you don't need any laws to protect your rights, because nobody is going to complain about your actions in the first place.

The protections are there to specifically protect against the UNPOPULAR actions that people get chided for. Freedom to do what you want so long as it conforms to exactly what society approves of isn't freedom at all.

Re:Mix (2)

fredrated (639554) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534875)

On the other hand, if the person being detained by the police was injured they would be screaming at the top of their lungs calling for video.

As for "not to be an ass in a functioning society" I guess that's in the eye of the beholder.

Re:Mix (1)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534895)

Do you not know the road that takes us down?

The one we're already on, that has no exits and severe tire (read: individual) damage will result from trying to back up.

Re:Mix (1)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534931)

While what you're saying is mostly true, I'd hope there would be room for decency and having things in moderation. For instance, thinking of an extreme situation, if a person had been kidnapped and stripped of their clothes but managed to escape, I'd hope that there would be some protections in place to prevent the inevitable videos of their naked run for help down the street from getting out of control. Obviously, we can't mandate common decency, nor should we do so, but there should be some way to protect people who have no meaningful control over the fact that they're in public.

All of that said, I don't know what a system like that would look like. If we wanted to protect the privacy of a mentally ill person who was not in control of themselves while in public, how could a normal person with a camera distinguish right then between a person undergoing an undesired violent episode who was entitled to their privacy and a person who was simply being violent without being entitled any privacy? As you said, it's a dangerous road, and I don't have the answers.

Re:Mix (2)

olsmeister (1488789) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534677)

So anytime I don't want people to film me in public, I should just have a violent mental health breakdown. Got it.

Re:Mix (2)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534679)

Except there's actually nothing at all which is illegal about what the guy did, and absolutely no legal basis to arrest him on a HIPAA violation.

These are trumped up, bullshit charges. Period.

The cops are being asshats, and should be charged.

Re:Mix (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534753)

But would you appreciate the video evidence if the police instead of just restraining you were kicking you in the gut and laughing? How about if that happened to your kid or your parent?

Re:Mix (5, Insightful)

ohnocitizen (1951674) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534833)

That's presuming "a violent mental breakdown" matches the actual events. If I was beaten up by the police and loaded into an ambulance with the tag "this guy is psychotic", I'd sure as hell want someone to have recorded what really happened.

Re:Mix (5, Interesting)

Hatta (162192) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534843)

Allowing the police to avoid being observed and recorded has consequences that affect society as a whole. That's really bad.

Allowing the police to enforce the privacy of someone they're arresting only really affects those few who are arrested. Arrest being an offical duty by a public official, should not really carry any sort of reasonable expectation of privacy. And whatever is captured on video actually happened, so there are no legitimate concerns of libel or slander. On the whole, this is not that bad.

I think it's clear where the balance lies. I would rather have a 100% chance of any future interaction between myself and law enforcement to be recorded and distributed on the internet than risk the slightest chance of police getting away with brutality. Allowing video might reveal some crazy shit I actually did. Prohibiting video might conceal some crazy shit the police actually did.

Of course, in some jurisdictions a police officer can be caught on tape sodomizing a prisoner with a tazer [huliq.com] and suffer nothing but "additional training". So YMMV.

Re: Mix (2)

Furmy (854336) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534885)

The police and paramedics can do this by placing bodies between camera and patient or by using sheets and blankets. Arresting people and confiscating equipment is not the way to provide a patient with privacy.

Re:Mix (1)

nine932038 (1934132) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534941)

In an ideal world, I wouldn't even think about this possibility, but in the current system, what you're suggesting lends itself well to abuse. For example, crooked authority figures would only need to appeal to the notion of politeness and privacy to cover their own deeds.

Re:Mix (1)

Trepidity (597) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534953)

I have some similar mixed thoughts, but honestly I don't really believe their explanation in this case. If someone mentally ill were being filmed in public and the police were not present, would any prosecutor later press HIPAA charges for the public filming? My guess is no, and that he's being prosecuted because he filmed the police, with filming the mentally ill person serving as the excuse.

That's some tortured reasoning. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534637)

Let's see how else they can figure out how to charge him.

I say "infliction of mental distress through use of photonic capture" would be wriggled in there some way.

Re:That's some tortured reasoning. (1)

ThisIsSaei (2397758) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534727)

Observation caused the quantum super-state of me having / not having a breakdown to collapse into a breakdown. The person with the camera should be charged with disturbing the peace for forcing reality down that particular route of events. Case closed.

Re:That's some tortured reasoning. (1)

Qzukk (229616) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534883)

I say "infliction of mental distress through use of photonic capture" would be wriggled in there some way.

He stole my soul!

The video was deleted? (2)

Scutter (18425) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534687)

If he was charged with a crime directly related to that video and it somehow got deleted while in police custody, how is that not tampering with evidence?

Re:The video was deleted? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534929)

Somebody must have done it accidentally, duh!

Re:The video was deleted? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42535057)

More to the point: if the evidence is gone, how do the police have a case?

Re:The video was deleted? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42535061)

You still think cops are subject to the same laws as everyone else, how cute.

Welcome to the Jackboot States of America (1)

msobkow (48369) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534707)

'nuff said.

Re:Welcome to the Jackboot States of America (1)

geekoid (135745) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535015)

Wrong.
Tat vast majority of places allow recording, and when they don't it gets shot down in court.
We have a police officers crossing the line. Probably thought he was doing the person having the breakdown a favors.
He wasn't correct, but lets not blow this out of proportion.

They didn't read HIPAA (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534743)

I have had cause to research this in a different set of circumstances. The public is not bound by HIPAA. Only health professionals and organizations routinely dealing in health information are covered.

Re:They didn't read HIPAA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534777)

Oh, and I don't recall seeing criminal penalties. Only civil.

Re:They didn't read HIPAA (1)

The Last Gunslinger (827632) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534961)

And since when does enforcement of federal law fall under the operational jurisdiction of county sheriffs?

Re:They didn't read HIPAA (1)

superdave80 (1226592) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535049)

I thought this too, but I read that an update to the law in 2009 gives state AGs the power to bring civil suits against offenders.

Scanners (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534767)

Yet you can hear live scanner feeds of people's names who are suicidal being announced over the police scanners, with addresses.
In fact, I'd dare bet that if there's a local scanner feed of that police department, Radio Reference archives scanner audio IIRC for three months and
can almost guarantee you'll find a HIPPA violation there.

Re:Scanners (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535051)

In fact, I'd dare bet that if there's a local scanner feed of that police department, Radio Reference archives scanner audio IIRC for three months and can almost guarantee you'll find a HIPPA violation there.

First, its HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996), not HIPPA.

Second, since law enforcement agencies are not generally covered entities under HIPAA (which generally applies to health care providers, health plans, and health care clearinghouses, and their contracted business associates) in the first place, it might be harder to find a HIPAA violation than you think.

HIPAA law... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534769)

Protects the consumer in regards to their data with organizations.

HIPPA law does not protect you from a person running around screaming you have aids if they find out because you told them or because they were smart enough to put 2 and 2 together.

Cops (0)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534771)

If cops were honestly screened for sociopathy, what percentage would test positive? 30%? 40%? The smaller the burg, that number nears unity; former high school bullies and little-man complexes that found an outlet for their aggression.

time to record video from a distance (1)

FudRucker (866063) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534819)

ever hear of a telephoto lens?

Re:time to record video from a distance (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534927)

Better yet, have a hidden recording device while prominently displaying another recording device.

You can then use the hidden recorded evidence during your lawsuit regarding illegal police confiscation of your obviously recorded evidence.

Its time to play a little entrapment vs the police now and see how they like it.

Re:time to record video from a distance (1)

Trepidity (597) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535009)

That works, but really only if you know something is going to happen ahead of time. If there's a scheduled protest and you suspect something will go down, you could set up with a telephoto in a nearby hotel or apartment (that's how Western photographers got their Tiananmen Square footage). But a lot of these police-filming incidents are just some regular person who happens to walk by, see something, and pull out their cell-phone camera. The odds of someone just happening to spot an incident from two blocks away while they're carrying a telephoto aren't quite as good.

Moral of the story.... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534919)

Record the police with a telephoto lens from far enough away that you can run and lose them when they try to steal your property.

Who doesn't have a medical condition? (1, Insightful)

greg_barton (5551) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534921)

Can I be arrested for taking a video of someone with a limp? How about bad acne? How are any public cameras legal? How are police dash cams legal? Wouldn't these all be HIPAA violations?

Can't help but wonder... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42534925)

Did the video contain evidence of the police accosting the man being taken away in the ambulance?

Likelihood is high.

Oddly enough the solution is a new law (3, Interesting)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534957)

There needs to be a new law that makes it clearly illegal for the police to interfere with someone recording them in a public place. Given the fact that police can be menacing it should be illegal for them to even ask you to stop or actively try to block you. In the same way they can't continue to ask you questions once you invoke your right to have an attorney present and have invoked your right to silence. The penalty for the law should be multi fold. Potential felony for the cop but also a minimum fine partially payable to the victim. This would serve to get more people videoing the police and the insult of the police having to write out checks to people they tried to intimidate would be golden.

The next tier of offense would be if the police then erase the video. With that there should be a minimum mandatory sentence along with a huge fine, again with much going to the victim.

Lastly there should be no exceptions tossed in as the slightest wedge given to the police would be abused to hell; So no being able to say it is evidence. If someone videos the police then the video should be as sacrosanct as client attorney privilege; if they want to youtube it then fine if they want to keep it safe then their choice.

It all boils down to information is power. Previously it was the whole your word against a policeman's which basically made their side of a story the only side of a story. But now the public has massive power not only through the video but through the near frictionless ability to distribute that video. 20 years ago if you were to say video the police pulling over a clearly drunk powerful politician even the local media might not touch that video assuming the police let you walk 5 feet away with it. Now you put it on youtube and the police suddenly do their job and charge the politician and while the prosecutor might not go for the throat will at least go through the minimum motions.

But all arguments that this somehow interferes with the police being able to do their jobs is false. The police have the clear ability to abuse or not abuse their power. But someone videoing the police does not change what happens they are not able to create abuse they can potentially try to show something out of context or add a colourful commentary but most people aren't stupid and will see through that in a flash. My guess is that any policeman that gets frustrated with being recorded is a policeman who doesn't want to be forced to obey the rules or knows they just broke the rules. They are lashing out because of frustration not because they think they are in the right.

This all reminds me of a local Indian restaurant lashing out after being closed for a zillion health violations; they argued that the health inspectors didn't understand Indian cooking nor did they think the health inspectors had any right to be in their kitchens. They argued that their insurance didn't cover health inspectors only employees, that the health inspectors were exaggerating, and that the inspection reports should not be public as the public wouldn't understand them. These all sound like the arguments that police make against recording them.

Not charged with HIPAA violation (4, Informative)

DragonWriter (970822) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534965)

While the headline of TFS asserts that he was charged with a HIPAA violation, the TFA makes clear that he was, in fact, charged with "obstruction of legal process and disorderly conduct"; the notes on the citation describing the event mention a HIPAA data privacy violation, but that's the description of the officer's version of the facts surrounding the charge, not the charged offense.

HIPAA doesnt apply.. (3, Insightful)

segfault_0 (181690) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534971)

HIPAA protects patients from medical entities and corporations, not from citizens on the street who have nothing to do with the dispensation of medical care.

CROOKED COPS.

Shouldn't the charges be dropped? (1)

Tyketto (97265) | about a year and a half ago | (#42534981)

Follow the logic here, and someone please correct me if I'm wrong. He was charged with violating HIPAA, based on the evidence confiscated by police during the evidence. Since such evidence doesn't exist (as the police erased it/seems to have gone missing), shouldn't the charges be dropped? For all intents and purposes, the guy was arrested and charged for something that has not happened/did not happen. This would mean that they would either a) have to let the guy go, based on lack of evidence, or b) produce the undoctored evidence, showing the missteps that police took. Either way, the guy walks, or the police gets dinged with evidence tampering.

Law is complicated (1)

Improv (2467) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535005)

If you're used to dealing with HIPAA (and as someone who has done human subjects research, I have), it's easy to not understand the borders of that; HIPAA training describes a set of norms for dealing with your subjects/patients, but it isn't legal advice per se. Someone in the heat of the moment who has never had to think about if HIPAA extends to other people might easily make the wrong call on the law.

People will learn how to handle this better in the future. There's no sense getting riled up about this. It's a simple mistake that anyone could make.

How are we supposed to make fun of crazy people (1)

wiredog (43288) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535031)

if the police won't let us tape them being crazy?

THIS is the problem with "We need a law..." (2)

swb (14022) | about a year and a half ago | (#42535041)

This is the problem with the mindset that everytime something bad happens we need a law to prevent it from happening again.

We have so many laws now that new laws often go unenforced (or the old ones they supplement go unenforced), and the police now have a laundry list of bullshit laws they can whip out when convenient.

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