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  1. #1
    jmur5074's Avatar
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    TV station refuses to turn over video of fire over to investigators

    WNEP-TV 16 does not have to release raw video to authorities investigating a deadly fire on Sullivan Street, a Luzerne County judge ruled on Friday. City police and state police at Wyoming were turned away by WNEP officials on June 1 when they attempted to execute a search warrant at their studios in Moosic for unedited video of the blaze that was not shown on their broadcasts.
    After investigators were ignored by WNEP, prosecutors obtained a court order on June 3 from Judge Tina Polachek Gartley, which ordered the local ABC network to release the video.
    WNEP challenged the court order claiming the raw video footage falls under the state's Shield Law of protected material by the media.


    More at the link:

    Pa. TV Station Doesn't Have to Give Up Raw Video | Firehouse.com




    What really gets me is the bolded line above. They "attempted" to serve a search warrant and were "ignored?" WHAT???? If I show up with a search warrant, signed by a judge, whether you ignore me or not I'm coming in. I wonder how that happened...?
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  2. #2
    Xiphos's Avatar
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    WTF? I'll bet these same assholes scream about the police not releasing dash cam footage to them.

    Releasing that video won't hurt a source and this does nothing but serve to enable a adversarial relationship with law enforcement.
    Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.

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  3. #3
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    Seems odd that they couldn't be charged with obstruction or something.
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  4. #4
    Jim1348 is offline Rookie
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    TV Station Refuses To Turn Over Video Of Fire Over To Investigators

    Umm, maybe I am too old fashioned, but where I come from people don't have a right to refuse execution of a search warrant. Can you imagine stacking up, ready to make an entry on a no-knock drug warrant. Oh, sorry, Mr. Doper is refusing the search warrant. I don't think so! It is a court order. In fact, where I come from court orders can, and often do, have language in them authorizing "...the full force of the county..." to enforce a court order. Either they have some very different rules in that area or, more likely, the reporter is properly explaining this.

    As an aside, I had a court order one time for a patient and records at a nearby hospital. The nurse told me no. I told her to hang on a second. I called the judge on the phone and she said it is very simple. I either bring before her the patient and records as commanded in her court order OR I bring before her the person that refused to comply. (There was NO medical reason, by the way, that the patient could not be transported.) Needless to say, once I relayed the information to the RN, her tune changed and I got both my patient and records! As many people here already know, most judges aren't real happy when somebody refuses to comply with their order.

  5. #5
    Jks9199 is offline The Reason People Hate Cops & Causer of War
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    I don't get "refusing to comply" with the search warrant, either. My guess is that it wasn't a search warrant, but a subpoena, and the tv stations lawyers blocked execution in court. 'Cause if I walk in with search warrant in hand, I'm walking out with what I'm looking for, or be damn confident it wasn't there.
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  6. #6
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    This...

    Quote Originally Posted by Xiphos View Post
    WTF? I'll bet these same assholes scream about the police not releasing dash cam footage to them.

    Releasing that video won't hurt a source and this does nothing but serve to enable a adversarial relationship with law enforcement.
    and this...


    Quote Originally Posted by Jks9199 View Post
    I don't get "refusing to comply" with the search warrant, either. My guess is that it wasn't a search warrant, but a subpoena, and the tv stations lawyers blocked execution in court. 'Cause if I walk in with search warrant in hand, I'm walking out with what I'm looking for, or be damn confident it wasn't there.
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  7. #7
    Xiphos's Avatar
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    I'm with you guys, they can't "refuse."

    "Look, either you can give us the footage or we will come in and seize everything we can find that may have the footage we're looking for. Every server, database, film cannister. After we eventually search it all and find what we're looking for, you can get the rest of your stuff back. Anyone that gets in the way will go in handcuffs and end up in jail for obstruction."
    Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.

    That which does not kill me, better start fucking running.

    If I lived every day like it was my last, the body count would be staggering.

    I intend to go in harm's way. -John Paul Jones

    Hunt the wolf, and bring light to the dark places that others fear to go. LT COL Dave Grossman

  8. #8
    jmur5074's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xiphos View Post
    I'm with you guys, they can't "refuse."

    "Look, either you can give us the footage or we will come in and seize everything we can find that may have the footage we're looking for. Every server, database, film cannister. After we eventually search it all and find what we're looking for, you can get the rest of your stuff back. Anyone that gets in the way will go in handcuffs and end up in jail for obstruction."

    And bingo was his name-o
    No one has greater love than this, to lay down ones life for ones friends - John 15:13

    "The Wicked Flee When No Man Pursueth: But The Righteous Are Bold As A Lion".

    We lucky few, we band of brothers. For he who today sheds his blood with me shall be my brother.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~
    The opinions, beliefs, and ideas expressed in this post are mine, and mine alone. They are NOT the opinions, beliefs, ideas, or policies of my Agency, Police Chief, City Council, or any member of my department.

  9. #9
    Jks9199 is offline The Reason People Hate Cops & Causer of War
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    There's one other thing I can see happening.

    PD gets a search warrant for the media in question. TV station has lawyers meet them at the door, threatening law suits, dropping words like "injunction" and "personal civil liability", while three camera crews are filming it, and a supervisor with less of a spine than a jellyfish goes "oh, crap!" and stops the execution while they get legal guidance.

    But I'd still suspect that they got a subpoena rather than a search warrant. It's more in keeping with what they were after.
    Voting against incumbents until we get a Congress that does its job.

    TASER: almost as good as alcohol for teaching white boys to dance

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    All opinions expressed are my own and are not official statements of my employer.

  10. #10
    Jim1348 is offline Rookie
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    Subpoena Duces Tecum

    It actually sounds to me an awful lot like the numerous "subpoena duces tecum" that I served when I was in civil process. I simply served someone that was authorized to accept service of process for the organization. I didn't stand around waiting for them to produce the records. If the respondent didn't comply, then it was up to the petitioner to take further action. If that is what they are actually referring to, then the reporter did not do a very good job in presenting the information. In my turf, a subpoena duces tecum is definitely NOT a search warrant.

  11. #11
    121Traffic's Avatar
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    I see a media blackout for that station from all PD's in the area. Don't want to help us out? Good luck in breaking any news story first that we have information about.
    "If anything worthwhile comes of this tragedy, it should be the realization by every citizen that often the only thing that stands between them and losing everything they hold dear... is the man wearing a badge." -- Ronald Reagan, in the wake of the deaths of 4 CHP troopers in the Newhall Incident, 1970

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