INSIDE EDITION Investigates: Did Videotaping Police Prompt Woman's Arrest?
INSIDE EDITION takes a look at video of police officers ticketing cars. The drivers weren't pulled over for speeding and they are not in a "no parking zone." So what's going on here? Some say it's all an act of revenge.
It was quite a scene. Three police officers slapping tickets on parked cars. Why did it take so many cops? What was going on?
To find out, you have to go back a few weeks, when Emily Good witnessed a commotion outside her home in Rochester, New York and decided to videotape the police activity.
Officer: You guys need something?
Emily: "I'm just on my front yard and I'm recording what you are doing. It's my right."
The police didn't appreciate her presence.
Officer: "I don't feel safe with you behind me, so I'm going to ask you to go in your house.
Emily: "I was standing in my front yard concerned about what was going on in my neighborhood and you are arresting me! What the hell is going on?"
Emily Good, who was with her friend, Ryan Acuff, didn't think she was doing anything wrong. After all, it was her front yard. "I'm thinking, is this for real? I don't want to back up, back off this entirely," she explained to INSIDE EDITION.
In the video, you can hear one officer repeatedly asking her to stop taping and go inside. But Good decided to stand her ground.
Officer: "I'm going to ask you one more time, we don't feel safe with you standing right behind us."
Good showed INSIDE EDITION what she did then, "I said ‘I'm going to back up' and I back up pretty quickly and he says, ‘No, no, stay right there, you are getting arrested.' "
Cop said on the video: "You know what, you're gonna go to jail."
What happened next was also caught on tape.
Emily (Being arrested) "I don't understand what's going on. I did nothing. I did nothing."
"He grabs my hand, turns me around and I hand my iPod off to Ryan and he arrests me," said Good.
Acuff explained how he then continued to videotape, "So I pick it up right then as she is being arrested and I film her being arrested."
Good (crying in video of arrest) "I'm sorry. I was standing in my front yard, concerned about what was going on in my neighborhood and you are arresting me! What the hell is going on?"
"I'm shaking, because this whole scene is absolutely surreal," explained Acuff.
Emily was charged with obstructing a police officer. But since her arrest, she says some very strange things happened. She says her back door was smashed in and someone stole the iPod she used to shoot the footage.
As for those three Rochester cops who went on a ticket blitz? It happened when a handful of Good's friends gathered at a community center to show their support for her court case. The violation? Parking more than 12 inches from the curb!
Videotape of that incident show cops issued citations when cars were parked little more than 12 inches from the curb.
"I thought it was clearly intimidation. It was some upset officers taking action to show who had power," said Good.
When Good showed up in court for a hearing, it took less than a minute for a judge to drop all charges. Outside court, she was embraced by her friends. "This has clearly struck a nerve with people all over the country. This happens way too much, way too much," she said leaving the courthouse.
Rochester Police Chief James Sheppard says it's perfectly legal to videotape officers in public places as long as you don't interfere. "My personal feeling is that you can have a camera on me all day, I'm gonna be professional all day long."
Now Chief Sheppard has launched an internal investigation to review Good's arrest and that mysterious parking ticket blitz.
"I would do it all over again despite the stress and pain this has caused," said Good.
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