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MTA employee sues city for $1 million after being arrested for taking pictures


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I know this was from last week, but thought Id post it for those who never read. This is regarding that MTA worker who got arrested off Freemen St (2)(5) Station in Feb. Posted a topic at SubChat... If ya remember




An MTA employee is suing the city after he spent several hours in jail for taking a photo of a passing subway train.


Robert Taylor, 31, a train and photography enthusiast, was taking photos of an approaching No. (2) train at the Freeman St. station in the Bronx on Feb. 12 when several police officers told him to delete the photos and then arrested him.


Taylor, who likes using subway photos as his computer screen saver, says he told the officers that he was an MTA staffer and knew that photographing subways is legal, but that the officers arrested him anyway and held him for several hours.


The charges against Taylor have since been dismissed.


A 2004 New York City transit proposal to ban photography on subways or subway platforms for safety reasons was never passed after protests by visual artists and civil liberties activists.


Gerald Cohen, Taylor's attorney, said he is asking for $1 million in the lawsuit, but would be pleased with a settlement similar to the $31,000 settlement the city gave to another subway photographer last year.


"It's ridiculous. Outrageous," Cohen said. "They really didn't need to arrest this guy.


"They just wanted to bully him around."


Source: Daily News

June 30, 2009

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If they wanted to deter people from taking photos, this isn't working. Aside from tourists who have all manner of quality & make & model of camera taking photos all over (with flash on for some reason :mad:), people like me, who are serious photographers like the subway and other modes of rail transportation, because it never gets old, and always has something new that you didn't get to see before.


- A

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What is really bad here is that the orders that are given out to officers state the following:

Members of service may not demand to view photographs taken by a person absent consent or exigent circumstances. A search warrant must be obtained to view its contents. In addition, a person who has taken pictures should not be directed to delete or destroy images stored within the device.


Now the ignorance is maybe understandable in some cases, but acting up to destroy the photos (I'm talking especially younger people) just because we "don't know the rules"... It's the other way around. I think it's the problem that cops can be ignorant, and take over the situation as if they were right.

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