Pittsburgh man arrested for audiotaping police

Pittsburgh man arrested for audiotaping police in public

Court/Assoc.: US Federal Court, Western District, PA

Attorneys/Firms: Witold Walczak, Sara Rose (ACLU-PA); Glen Downey (Healey & Hornack, P.C.); Seth Kreimer (University of Pennsylvania)

The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania filed a lawsuit on August 13, 2009, on behalf of a Pittsburgh man who was arrested by University of Pittsburgh police earlier this year for recording an interaction between police and one of his friends.

Elijah Matheny, a resident of the Hill District, was charged with violating the state wiretapping law, which forbids audio taping without the consent of all parties involved. According to the lawsuit, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled that the state's Wiretap Act does not apply to people who audiotape government officials in public settings, where they have no "expectation of privacy."

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