|SAME AS||SAME AS S08074|
|Add §79-o, Civ Rts L|
|Relates to recording certain law enforcement activities; provides that a person not under arrest or in the custody of a law enforcement official has the right to record police activity and to maintain custody and control of that recording and of any property or instruments used by that person to record police activities, however, a person in custody or under arrest does not, by that status alone, forfeit such right to record.|
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NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION
submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A10387A SPONSOR: Perry
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the civil rights law, in relation to recording certain law enforcement activities   PURPOSE: The purpose of this legislation is to unambiguously affirm, by statutory enactment, the right of New Yorkers to record, with expressed exceptions, the actions of persons acting under the color of law.   SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: The civil rights law is amended by adding a new section, 79-o, entitled "Recording certain activities." Section one of the bill provides that the act shall be known as the "New Yorker's right to monitor act." Section two of the bill includes: definitions; delineates the right to record law enforcement related activities; creates a right of action for persons who suffer an unlawful abridgement of their right to record and an affirmative defense for persons charged with a violation of this right; and preservation of rights. Section two of the bill includes a severability clause. Section three of the bill is the effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: Several Federal Circuit Courts, the First, Seventh, Ninth, and Eleventh Circuits, have issued clear and consistent opinions finding that the First Amendment of the United States Constitution openly confers and protects the right of ordinary civilians to record police activity. The right of people to document the public activities of law enforcement helps to ensure that the police and others engaged in law enforcement activities are accountable to the public.   PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: This is a new bill.   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the thirtieth day after it shall have become a law.
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STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 10387--A IN ASSEMBLY May 25, 2016 ___________ Introduced by M. of A. PERRY, SEPULVEDA -- read once and referred to the Committee on Codes -- reported and referred to the Committee on Rules -- Rules Committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to the Committee on Rules AN ACT to amend the civil rights law, in relation to recording certain law enforcement activities The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem- bly, do enact as follows: 1 Section 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the "New 2 Yorker's right to monitor act". 3 § 2. The civil rights law is amended by adding a new section 79-o to 4 read as follows: 5 § 79-o. Recording certain activities. 1. Definitions. For purposes of 6 this section, the following terms shall have the following meanings: 7 (a) "Officer" means any peace officer, police officer, security offi- 8 cer, security guard or similar official who is engaged in a law enforce- 9 ment activity; 10 (b) "Law enforcement activity" means any activity by an officer acting 11 under the color of law; and 12 (c) "Record" means to capture or attempt to capture any moving or 13 still image, sound, or impression through the use of any recording 14 device, camera, or any other device capable of capturing audio, moving 15 or still images, or by way of written notes or observations. 16 2. Right to record law enforcement related activities. A person not 17 under arrest or in the custody of a law enforcement official has the 18 right to record law enforcement activity and to maintain custody and 19 control of that recording and of any property or instruments used by 20 that person to record law enforcement activities, provided, however, 21 that a person in custody or under arrest does not, by that status alone, 22 forfeit the right to have any such recordings, property and equipment 23 maintained and returned to him or her. Nothing in this subdivision shall 24 be construed to permit a person to engage in actions that physically 25 interfere with law enforcement activity or otherwise constitute a crime EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD15592-03-6A. 10387--A 2 1 defined in the penal law involving obstructing governmental adminis- 2 tration. 3 3. Private right of action. (a) A claim of unlawful interference with 4 recording a law enforcement activity is established under this section 5 when a person demonstrates that he or she exercised or attempted to 6 exercise the right established in subdivision two of this section to 7 record a law enforcement activity and an officer acted to interfere with 8 that person's recording of a law enforcement activity, including but not 9 limited to, by: 10 (i) intentionally preventing or attempting to prevent that person from 11 recording law enforcement activity; 12 (ii) threatening that person for recording a law enforcement activity; 13 (iii) commanding that the person cease recording law enforcement 14 activity when the person was nevertheless authorized under law to 15 record; 16 (iv) stopping, seizing, searching, ticketing or arresting that person 17 because that person recorded a law enforcement activity; or 18 (v) unlawfully seizing property or instruments used by that person to 19 record a law enforcement activity, unlawfully destroying, or seizing a 20 recorded image or recorded images of a law enforcement activity, or 21 copying such a recording of a law enforcement activity without consent 22 of the person who recorded it or approval from an appropriate court. 23 (b) It shall be an affirmative defense to a civil action under subpar- 24 agraphs (i), (iii) and (iv) of paragraph (a) of this subdivision that at 25 the time of such conduct by an officer, such officer had probable cause 26 to arrest the person recording such a law enforcement activity for a 27 crime defined in the penal law involving obstructing governmental admin- 28 istration. 29 (c) A person subject to unlawful interference with recording law 30 enforcement activities as described in paragraph (a) of this subdivision 31 may bring an action for any violation of this section in any court of 32 competent jurisdiction for damages, including punitive damages, for 33 declaratory and injunctive relief, and such other remedies as the court 34 may deem appropriate. 35 (d) In any action or proceeding brought pursuant to this section, the 36 court may allow a prevailing plaintiff reasonable attorney's fees and 37 expert fees as a part of the costs which may be recovered. 38 (e) Any action or proceeding brought pursuant to this section shall be 39 commenced no later than three years after the date on which the 40 violation of this section is committed. 41 4. Preservation of rights. This section shall be in addition to all 42 rights, procedures, and remedies available under the United States 43 Constitution, 42 USC 1983, the constitution of the state of New York and 44 all other federal law, state law, law of the city of New York or the 45 administrative code of the city of New York, and all other civil reme- 46 dies, including monetary damages, created by statute, ordinance, regu- 47 lation or common law. 48 § 3. Severability. If any provision of this bill or any other 49 provision of this local law, or any amendments thereto, shall be held 50 invalid or ineffective in whole or in part or inapplicable to any person 51 or situation, such holding shall not affect, impair or invalidate any 52 portion of or the remainder of this act, and all other provisions there- 53 of shall nevertheless be separately and fully effective and the applica- 54 tion of any such provision to other persons or situations shall not be 55 affected.A. 10387--A 3 1 § 4. This act shall take effect on the thirtieth day after it shall 2 have become a law.