Good Citizen, Bad Arrest: New York Woman Arrested After Videotaping Police — From Her Own Front Yard

There is a new report of police arresting a citizen because she videotaped them (below) — this time from her own front yard. According to his report, a woman named Emily Good was arrested after videotaping an arrest of a man at a traffic stop in Rochester, New York.

What is most disturbing is that the officer is clearly manufacturing a reason to stop her from videotaping and arresting her. They clearly can see that she is not armed and she responds clearly to their statements, including saying that she will step back a foot as demanded by the officers. From the fact of it, it appears an abusive arrest and another case of punishing citizens for filming police — which is not a crime.

After the woman correctly states that she has a right to videotape the arrest. The officer then thinks about it and says “I don’t feel safe with you standing behind me, so I’m going to ask you to go into your house.” The police officer is identified on some sites as Officer Mario Masic.

Notably, at this time, the man was already in cuffs and being put into the cruiser. This exchange occurred after he was put into custody. The officer then adds “You seem very anti-police … due to what you said to me before you started taping me.” When she asks what statement he is referring to, he then escalates further to say that she will be arrested for failing to obey his commands.

We have seen continued arrests of citizens for videotaping police — viewed as a more resource in addressing police brutality and abuse. This trend has continued (here) despite court rulings in favor of citizens. Politicians have done little to reaffirm the rights of citizens in these cases and officers are rarely subject to discipline for such arrests.

There is no report of any investigation by the Rochester Police Department in light of this disturbing video. Clearly, other officers and presumably at least one prosecutor participated in bringing this charge, which appears both meritless and retaliatory. We will continue to follow the story to see if any action will be taken.


Jonathan Turley

84 thoughts on “Good Citizen, Bad Arrest: New York Woman Arrested After Videotaping Police — From Her Own Front Yard”

  1. You all act like she was beaten and the guy on the tape was beaten… they were doing their job… She should not have been arrested… But still think about it this way what if she was a friend of that guy they were arresting and had a gun… than not one person would have said squat about the police asking her to move back and leave… This country is in need of people working together.. not people doing everything they can to prove that the government and its agencies are doing wrong… NEWS FLASH: every government in the history of the world has been corrupt it will never change!!!!!

  2. Rafflaw, are they out of control or just expanding the pool of folks to be treated like dogs under the color of law? I know that such classes of people exist and that the political climate makes those classes and groups changeable. If that is true, and it is to me, then the expansion of the target group to what seems to be the public-at-large is a pretty terrifying vector/proof of the political climate in the country. I believe we hit the bottom of that slippery slope people (still) talk about some time ago and are now working on the hole we’re digging at the bottom of it. This doesn’t look like we’re inclined to top digging any time soon.

  3. FFLEO, That’s the problem, folks like you seem to be in short supply on the nations police forces. Not sucking up here but you’re personal code, which I suspect was your professional code, seems to be an exception, not the rule. Sad, sad for us all.

  4. I would resign my commission before I wrote a ticket for parking 12.5 inches–instead of 12.0 inches–from the curb,

    We humans are reaching global insanity at an ever-increasing rate…

  5. lottakatz – I shook my head when I saw it. The fact that these officers would actually organize and so openly harass Good’s supporters – all while this event is still in the press – shocked even me. It speaks volumes about the sense of untouchability and power that characterizes much of law enforcement today.

  6. Puzzling, that video is amazing. First Amendment violation much? Maybe a class of plaintiffs ought to ask that question.


    And I thought I had grown out of such language but that’s the only word that comes to mind.

  7. There is an update in this case that I didn’t see posted here, related to the naked tactics the police have begun to use to harass supporters of Emily Good.

    No doubt Good’s supporters will be arrested and charged with moving violations this week when they are tracked by local police. Drugs and weapons may even turn up after a K9 alert. Strip searches done. Homes searched for related contraband. Employers queried. Personal property confiscated. Children put into protective custody. Mental competence questioned and evaluated. Solitary confinement ordered for personal safety. Psychotropic drugs administered. Plea bargains offered.

    All of these are up to the State and its agents.

    Petty Thuggishness in Rochester

    The video below is from a Rochester, New York, neighborhood meeting in support of Emily Good, the woman arrested for videotaping a traffic stop from her front yard. So Rochester police sent four squad cars to ticket the cars of meeting attendees who parked more than 12 inches from the curb. Yes, they even brought a ruler.

    And they are just getting started. Let this be a warning to those who would question authority.

  8. If I ran the zoo… given the state of technology today, I would require that police carry POV video cameras and record everything they do all the time. Not to say that an arrest would be invalid without the video, but its absence would have to be explainable for the arrest to hold up in court.

    I would like to think that “good apple” cops would support this. There’s no shame in acknowledging that everyone, bar no one, is immune from the temptation to abuse power. Knowing they couldn’t get away with it would help a lot more cops play by the book.

  9. Hatcams. Hmmm. With modern miniature CCD camera and flash memory, if you only wanted to build them with a 5-15 minute single battery use recording time, that just might work. You could probably even make them visually indistinct from regular ball caps.

    Sure. It’s silly. But I kinda like it.

  10. Hatcams for all! People should get in the habit of routinely video recording police activity. They can’t stop us if thousands of people are doing it.

  11. A uniform and badge does not make you immune to the laws you are enforcing; In fact they make you more culpable if you break them.

  12. the audio is a little unclear but i think the driver admitted he had been drinking. he wasn’t arrested though, no sobriety test either. too busy arresting her i guess.

  13. What OS said. The police can do their job without arresting or threatening people who are not breaking the law. If they can’t they need to be off the force.

  14. Problem here was that the police were about to commit an illegal search of the mans car and they couldn’t have that filmed so that he might be able to use it later in court, that’s it, plain and simple.

  15. Oh, I forgot to add something… if that stupid cop doesn’t feel comfortable about her standing behind him, why doesn’t he use his initiative to move to safer place? *rolls eyes* Do people have to be THAT frickin’ stupid to believe his story of not being safe?

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