The Civil Liberties Defense Center will be hosting a Know Your Rights information booth at Kesey Square to empower everyone in the Eugene community to know their rights when interacting with the police. Advice on constitutional rights, such as the right to assemble in public places like Kesey Square, sidewalks and public parks will be emphasized as well as basic instruction on how to “Copwatch,” or video record law enforcement.
Last week, federal courts issued two decisions affirming the right of citizens to record police under the First Amendment.
In light of the shortcomings of the legal system and growing police violence against people, there are many ways that communities can help each other to defend their rights to be free from unlawful searches, seizures, and cruel and inhumane treatment by law enforcement officers.
In light of the recent Supreme Court case that came out a couple weeks ago that found that GPS tracking constitutes a search under the Fourth Amendment, and therefore requires a warrant we wanted to go over your rights to protect your data if you end up in a situation where you record police misconduct on your phone.
Copwatchers are on the lookout for police brutality at all times, not just when a demonstration or protest is taking place. However, the goals of decreasing police brutality and keeping cops accountable for their actions against citizens are the same. They also practice careful documentation of any incidents.
Legal Observing is an exciting way to play an important role in any demonstration or protest. Legal Observers are individuals who purposely position themselves close enough to demonstrations to be able to accurately watch and report the activities of participants and the law enforcement who interact with them.
On Monday, January 23rd, a federal jury ruled that Sergeant Solesbee used excessive force in an arrest of environmental activist Josh Schlossberg. The CLDC has been working tirelessly for years on Schlossberg's case and is pleased with the verdict. We hope that this case will be a precedent in protecting the rights of activists to film police officers.