Wednesday, March 17, 2010
N.C. Judge Rules Police Dash-Cam Videos Not Public Records
North Carolina's Randolph County Superior Court Judge Brad Long ruled that police dash-cam videos are not a matter of public record. A lawyer representing the N.C. Press Association says the ruling highlights a gray area in the state's open records laws, where the law hasn't kept pace with technological developments.
The decision stems from the efforts of media groups to obtain two dash-cam videos that could have shed light on the August 2009 fatal shooting of 21-year old UNC fraternity president Courtland Smith by an Archdale police officer on Interstate 85 after Smith had called 911 asking for assistance. The 911 radio transmission and police traffic tapes were released. The 911 radio transmission contains Smith telling a dispatcher he was suicidal, driving drunk at speeds up to 100 mph and armed with a 9 mm pistol.
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