A federal judge has dismissed a civil-rights lawsuit filed by a newspaper photographer who accused officers of illegally barring him from taking pictures at a freeway crash scene and handcuffing him when he persisted.More here.
Oakland Tribune photographer Ray Chavez, 45, said police officers had interfered with his right as a member of the press to cover news, specifically a car crash and the emergency response time. He was "arrested and handcuffed without justification solely due to the exercise of First Amendment rights," said his suit, filed in U.S. District Court.
But in a ruling Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco dismissed the suit, saying the media have no First Amendment right to be at an accident or crime scene if the general public is excluded.
Saturday, June 06, 2009
Judge rules media have no more rights than general public at crime, accident scenes
If the general public doesn't have access to a crime or accident scene, journalists don't have a First Amendment right to that access either, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. This ruling came from U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer who dismissed the case of Oakland Tribune photographer Ray Chavez. Chavez was arrested after officers barred him from standing in the freeway to take photos of an accident.