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Secretly Recording Police without Consent

The US Court of Appeals ruled that it is unconstitutional for the state of Massachusetts to ban secret recordings of police officers. Previously, Massachusetts were banning individuals and making it a crime to secretly recording police officers based on an old wiretapping statute.


The US Court of Appeals affirmed the Federal District Court ruling that the Massachusetts state law regarding recording police officers violated the First Amendment. Judge David Barron wrote in his opinion that “despite a record that does little to show how secret, nonconsensual audio recording of police officers doing their jobs in public interferes with their mission." This case started with Martin v. Rollins a 2016 case in which two civil rights activists sued the Boston police and the Suffolk District Attorney.




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