Dallas Police are better than most in dealing with photographers and cop watchers

By Sky Chadde / Unfair Park / Dallas Observer - October 17, 2014

Max Geron, the Dallas Police Department's media relations officer, smiled and shook his head in disbelief. In the video, a veteran East Coast police officer approached a photojournalist, who was standing across the street from a traffic stop with multiple squad cars present, and told him to leave. The officer didn't seem to know that, as long as they don't insert themselves into the scene, citizens and journalists have the right to film officers in public. Also, within reason, officers have the right to keep those taking pictures a certain distance away. However, "'Go away and step off the face of the earth' is not reasonable," said the moderator of a panel on the issue Thursday night, which is essentially what the East Coast officer told the photojournalist.

The moderator, a former photographer and a current media-rights lawyer, said that police officers have a sensitivity toward one of their own being filmed, and that's when Geron, who publicly is a progressive on policing, took the mic to defend not the East Coast officer's behavior, but the mentality that may lead to it.

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By Avi S. Adelman under Public safety , Legal issues