Is photography a crime in America? Judging by recent arrests of photographers, an answer to this question might be yes. For one journalist, in Miami, Florida, an answer is a resounding no.
Besides a fact that the first amendment of the United States Constitution protects free speech in public places, which includes public photography and videography. Tell that to some police enforcers in this country, whom out right lie and claim photography is a crime. Photographers, citizen journalists, videographers, etc. are seemingly on a daily basis perhaps being arrested, detained, and even assaulted.
Back in 2007, Carlos Miller fell victim to America’s police state, where by he was arrested for the outrageous crime of photographing five Miami Dade police officers. Initially, he was found guilty for that incident. However, he appealed and later had that verdict overturned.
Mr. Miller because of an initial guilty verdict, was sentenced to and served probation. He initially created his Photography is Not a Crime blog just to document his trials and tribulations. Soon after he started seeing participation from concerned citizens and thus PINAC was born.
With years of experience as a photo journalist, Carlos Miller created his own media outlet via his successful blog. Since that 2007 initial incident, Mr. Miller has been arrested two more times for similar circumstances of a dasterdly act of photography and videography in public. It seems clear that many police officers in America do not like being photographed and captured on video.
Another interesting aspect of all this is how Mr. Miller took it upon himself to become the media, as he has been frustrated with a lack of mainstream and local media coverage of police brutality, corruption, misconduct, etc. Do you think photography and videography in public is a crime? If you do, you might want to listen to my interview of Carlos Miller, for a better understanding of why an answer should be no.