First Amendment Right to Videorecord TSA Patdown of Your Family Member
From Dyer v. Smith, decided Tuesday by Judge John A. Gibney, Jr. (E.D. Va.):
On June 8, 2019, Dustin Dyer, his husband, and their children traveled through the airport in Richmond, Virginia. When the family entered the TSA checkpoint, TSA agents quickly cleared Dyer and the children. The agents did not, however, clear Dyer’s husband. They told Dyer’s husband that, per TSA policy, they must perform a pat-down search because he carried infant formula that they could not open for testing.
As the pat-down search began, Dyer turned on his cell phone camera and began recording the search. Dyer stood about ten feet away from the pat-down. After about one minute, TSA Agent Natalie Staton noticed Dyer recording and asked him to stop, saying that his recording impeded the ability of the agent performing the pat-down “to do his job.” Dyer did not stop recording and asked Staton, “What are you talking about?” Staton then left and returned with her supervisor, Shirrellia Smith.
Dyer asked Smith if he could record and Smith responded, “No, no recording.” Dyer stopped recording. Staton then asked Smith to “order Dyer to delete the recording that he had made so far.” Smith ordered Dyer to delete the video while Staton watched. “Dyer deleted the recording from his phone while [Staton] looked at the screen of his cell phone ….”
TSA agents then allowed Dyer, his husband, and their chi
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