(Liz Klimas) Adam Pringle was cited by a San Diego police officer over the weekend for smoking on the sidewalk — an actual violation of the law in the area he was in — but it wasn’t so much this violation that he finds upsetting. Pringle was filming his citation with his smartphone and after he refused to stop when asked by police, he claims the officer attacked him.
According to Photography is Not a Crime – a weblog frequently covering the right to photograph and film law enforcement activities in public — Pringle was walking on Mission Beach boardwalk on Saturday when two police on bicycles approached him and his friends for the violation.
In the video that was posted on YouTube of the encounter, you can see an officer writing up the ticket as Pringle says offscreen that he was getting a citation for smoking on the sidewalk. From there, when the officer is about to explain to Pringle the citation, he asks that Pringle put his phone away. Pringle refused, which led to what appears to be a struggle before the screen goes dark.
“I have a right to film this, I am in a public spot,” Pringle said.
To which the cop responded, “cellphones can be converted into weapons …look it up online.”
Pringle repeatedly said his cellphone was not a weapon.
Watch the footage taken by Pringle: