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This Professor Shared Body Camera Footage of Cops Strip-Searching a Minor. Now, Prosecutors Want To Throw Him in Jail for It.

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First Amendment

Billy Binion | 6.7.2021 11:16 AM

The Parish Attorney's Office for East Baton Rouge is seeking to jail a professor after he shared publicly available body camera footage showing a traffic stop where five Baton Rouge Police Department (BPRD) officers strip-searched a minor and then entered the family's home, with guns drawn, without a warrant or consent.

Thomas Frampton, associate professor of law at the University of Virginia, acquired the video, which was originally obtained and published by Reason. The report attracted significant national attention, ultimately prompting a BRPD press conference on May 28, when the department defended the strip search but said a review was underway as it pertained to the warrantless home entry.

During that presser, Frampton received notice that East Baton Rouge Parish Attorney Anderson "Andy" Dotson III, Assistant Parish Attorney Deelee S. Morris, and Special Assistant Parish Attorney Joseph K. Scott III had filed an order to hold him in contempt of court and put him behind bars for up to six months. The request cites a Louisiana state law that prohibits disseminating "records and reports" relevant to juvenile court proceedings.

Such a proceeding doesn't exist.

In a June 2 letter to Dotson obtained by Reason, Nora Ahmed, legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana, notes that "there is not now (nor has there ever been) a 'matter or proceeding before the juvenile court' related to the events depicted on the videos." The government made the footage public in November of last year.

Dotson did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

The incident depicted occurred on January 1, 2020, when five BRPD cops strip-searched a minor and his brother, Clarence Green, then 23, because the officers allegedly........

© Reason.com

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