Man Who Refused To Hand Over Arrest Video Acquitted
66-Year-Old Man Took Video On Cellphone
8:50 AM, Jul 1, 2011
An Indianapolis man who was charged after he refused to give police video of an arrest he captured on his cellphone has been acquitted.Willie King, 66, was standing on his neighbor's property in the 3900 block of North Whittier Place as he recorded officers arresting a man on Feb. 18."I heard the neighbors screaming and hollering about the police. (They said) 'You all get off of him. He's already in handcuffs. Why are you doing this?' " King said. "I just got my camera out, put it on record, walked over to my neighbor's house and stood on his stoop."The video shows an officer asking King if he was recording, saying he needed the video for evidence."You ain't taking (expletive). There ain't no evidence," King is heard saying on the video.King was arrested and later charged with resisting arrest, public intoxication and disorderly conduct."I'm down there with his knee in my back and another with his elbow in my neck in handcuffs," King said of the arrest. "I'm 66 years old. I've never been arrested."On Thursday, Marion County Judge William Nelson acquitted King on all charges.Legal expert Joel Schumm told 6News' Joanna Massee he does not believe police have the right to arbitrarily demand citizens' cellphones.He said recording arrests can help protect citizens and the police by proving what really happened, but suggested those doing the recording defend their rights without using profanity."I think if a citizen says, 'Yes, I've taped this. If you want to get this, here's my name and phone number. You can pursue a legal process to get it in the future,' I think that's fine," Schumm said.King said he's upset he was arrested and had to go before a judge. He said he feels anything but protected."I had the camera out. I wanted the police to see, if you're doing anything wrong, stop. I wasn't glory hunting or nothing," he said. "There's something wrong with the system."Indianapolis Police Chief Paul Ciesielski confirmed an internal investigation is under way concerning the incident. The findings will be presented to the Citizens' Police Complaint Board for review.