Police are back in the news for how they interact with protesters and the public when making an arrest.
During Sunday's counter-protest to a permitted Tea Party rally, police were photographed arresting people on the Boston Common and one picture in particular, of an officer with his hands around the neck of a person who didn't appear to be resisting, has caused outrage.
The photo, taken by Paul Weiskel, a history student at the University of Massachusetts Boston, has made its rounds on the Internet and prompted criticism of the police department.
But police spokeswoman Elaine Driscoll said that officers responded appropriately. She told the Boston Globe, "The aggressive nature of these individuals required officers to call for numerous additional units to respond. The department supports the arrests made by the officers today. As a matter of routine procedure following a day of aggressive protests, the department will review all of the activity that took place during the course of the day.”
Weiskel said that the protester was not arrested, according to the Globe article.
Police also appear to be blocking Weiskel from taking photos, just weeks after the city paid a man $170,000 for illegally arresting him for taking photos of police making an arrest on the Common in 2007. In August, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit ruled people filming public officials on the job are protected by the First Amendment, according to wbur.org.
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