Win for the 1st Amendment.

Today is a twofer day—that is two posts for me instead of one. 

Tyranny in Maryland loses. Last Spring, Maryland Police seized computer and other personal possessions of  a Maryland man because he video-taped police during a traffic stop.  The cops claimed the man violated Maryland’s “wire-tapping” law by video-taping the cops on a public highway.

Today a judge said the cops had no expectation of privacy while on a public highway and therefore no claim of exclusivity could be made.
    

Wiretap Charges Tossed in Videotaping of Trooper

Updated: Tuesday, 28 Sep 2010, 8:12 AM EDT
Published : Monday, 27 Sep 2010, 9:06 PM EDT

By BEN NUCKOLS Associated Press Writer

BALTIMORE – A judge threw out criminal charges Monday against a Maryland man who videotaped his traffic stop by a plainclothes state trooper and posted the video on YouTube.
Anthony J. Graber III had been indicted under Maryland’s wiretap law, which requires the consent of both parties to record a private conversation. His video shows the trooper pulling his gun and telling Graber to get off his motorcycle before he identifies himself as a police officer.
Harford County Circuit Judge Emory A. Plitt Jr. ruled that the wiretap law did not apply to a traffic stop because the conversation was not private.
“In this rapid information technology era in which we live, it is hard to imagine that either an offender or an officer would have any reasonable expectation of privacy with regard to what is said between them in a traffic stop on a public highway,” Plitt wrote.
Harford County State’s Attorney Joseph I. Cassilly, who obtained the indictment against Graber, did not immediately return a message seeking comment.