Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


LAPD Launches Investigation into YouTube Video of Officer Harassing Photographer

Before you
Dear reader, we're asking you to help us keep local news available for all. Your tax-deductible financial support keeps our stories free to read, instead of hidden behind paywalls. We believe when reliable local reporting is widely available, the entire community benefits. Thank you for investing in your neighborhood.

Not even 24 hours after uploading a video of his encounter with an LAPD officer caught on video, police have launched an investigation. The video depicts an officer telling local photographer Shawn Nee he can't take a photo of him from the sidewalk without his permission. Nee rejects the notion, citing the law, but the officer said he didn't care what the law was.

"Constitutional policing is very important to Chief Beck and we examine cases through that lens," said Commander Richard Webb, who announced that his Internal Affairs group will conduct the investigation. "We will keep the Inspector General informed of the progress of the investigation which will ultimately be presented to the Chief of Police to determine if any discipline or retraining should take place.”

The investigation was also spurred by some words -- mostly likely by calling the photographer a "fruitcake" -- "that warrants an investigation," said police.

12 states do have laws on the books regarding taking photos or video without consent, according to Gizmodo in an article that happened to be published yesterday. But what about California? "It's not illegal to take illegal to take picture of police in California," Lt. John Romero of the LAPD told LAist.

Support for LAist comes from

Previously: LAPD Officer Loses it after Photographer Snaps Photo of Him