Is It Legal To Film Police Officers in Houston, Texas?
According to the first amendment, citizens have the right to film police officers performing their official duties. There are some restrictions though- for example, if a person causes problems or gets in the way of an officer doing his job, that person can be arrested.
A person cannot “impede, disrupt, or otherwise interfere” with a peace officer performing an official duty. – Texas Penal Code 38.15 “Interference with Public Duties”
If you’re on private property, the restrictions are generally more strict. The property owner gets to make the rules and if they ask you to leave and you don’t, then you can be arrested for trespassing.
Best Way to Film Police
Simply put, the best way to film police officers is from a reasonable distance and on public property.
Did you know that despite what the law says, police officers can wrongfully arrest individuals if they so desire? I have seen this happen where people are arrested for offenses such as resistance to arrest, interference with public duties, and even assaulting a public servant–all because the person annoyed the arresting officer. If you find yourself in this predicament, be sure to seek out legal representation immediately so your case can be fought thoroughly. And remember: according to the 1st Amendment of The Constitution, citizens have every right to film police officers while on duty as long as it isn’t done in a way that disrupts or impedes their workflow; however, should an individual be caught interfering with an officer’s ability do their job description, that person can be legally arrested.