Right to Record Government Employees Applies Beyond Just Police Officers
From Aguilar v. Moyer, decided Tuesday by Magistrate Judge Martin C. Carlson (M.D. Pa.):
The following facts are taken from the plaintiff’s complaint, which we must accept as true for the purposes of this motion to dismiss. On April 5, 2019, Priscilla Aguilar’s husband, Carlos Figueroa, called Water Authority in an attempt to restore the water connection to the couple’s house. Though he was informed that no employees were available to restore the connection, Figueroa later noticed Moyer, a Water Authority employee, on the property.
Figueroa inquired as to whether Moyer “was there to turn the water on,” to which Moyer responded he was there to ensure the water remained off. Figueroa then asked whether Moyer could turn the water on, to which Moyer replied that he would “need a work order” to do so. Figueroa expressed his anger over Water Authority’s apparent misrepresentation of its employees’ availability. He then reentered the couple’s house when Moyer threatened to call the police.
Despite Figueroa’s withdrawal from the conflict, Moyer called his son, “a patrolman with the Borough of Shenandoah Police Department,” from his work truck. Figueroa and Aguilar then left the house and entered their parked vehicle without starting the engine. While the couple sat in their vehicle, Moyer exited his truck and photographed Aguilar, Figueroa, and their vehicle’s license plate.
About ten minutes after Moyer placed the call to his son, his son arrived in a police cruiser and asked Figueroa for identification. Aguilar then began recording the interaction between Figueroa and Moyer’s son using Figueroa’s cell phone. Figueroa
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