There are some very disturbing videos circulating the Internet right now, depicting the deaths of unarmed civilians at the hands of trained, armed men. Many of these videos even show individuals being shot in the back, or as they try to flee.
These are videos of police officers in America killing unarmed black men like Oscar Grant and Eric Garner. And, as the most recent case shows, without these recordings, much of America might not have any idea exactly how much of a problem this is.
Citizen videos of law enforcement encounters are more valuable than ever. And for those who are wondering—it is legal to record the police.
The police don’t always seem aware of this. There have been incidents across the country of police telling people to stop filming, and sometimes seizing their camera or smartphone, or even arresting them, when they don’t comply.
In the most recent citizen-filmed incident to gain widespread media attention, on April 4, white police officer Michael Slager shot and killed 50-year-old black man Walter Scott in the back as he ran away in North Charleston, South Carolina. Bystander Feiden Santana filmed the encounter, which started with a traffic stop.… Read the rest