The efforts of cop watchers and First Amendment auditors to record police continues to be a controversial subject. Some use aggressive tactics that critics say go too far, others argue the country’s law-enforcement-industrial complex needs to be aggressively challenged to yield results. PAR examines the contours of this debate through the case of Denver cop watcher DJ Kdot the party. Dj Kdot was arrested by police in Aurora, Colorado, for allegedly interfering with an investigation while filming a traffic stop. What happened when the case went to trial reveals much about the state of cop watching today, the extent of our First Amendment protections, and the expansive reach of the US criminal justice system.
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