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:: Thursday, April 24, 2008 ::

Radio for Back Up

radio for back up
Originally uploaded by i didn't mean to go to Stoke.

"My friend and I were photographing in the town. I spotted a man being detained by this security guard and a policeman, some kind of altercation was going on, i looked through my zoom lens to see what was happening and then moved on.

"Moments later as i walked away this goon jumped in front of me and demanded to know what i was doing. i explained that i was taking photos and it was my legal right to do so, he tried to stop me by shoulder charging me, my friend started taking photos of this, he then tried to detain us both. I refused to stand still so he grabbed my jacket and said i was breaking the law. Quickly a woman and a guy wearing BARGAIN MADNESS shirts joined in the melee and forcibly grabbed my friend and held him against his will. We were both informed that street photography was illegal in the town.
Two security guards from the nearby shopping center THE MALL came running over, we were surrounded by six hostile and aggressive security guards. They then said photographing shops was illegal and this was private land. I was angry at being grabbed by this man so i pushed him away, one of the men wearing a BARGAIN MADNESS shirt twisted my arm violently behind my back, i winced in pain and could hardly breathe in agony.
A policewomen was radioed and came over to question the two suspects ( the total detaining us had risen to seven, a large crowd had now gathered)
The detaining guard released me, i asked the policewoman if my friend and i could be taken away from the six guards, she motioned us to a nearby seat and told all the security people to go. She took our details, name, address, date of birth etc. She wanted to check my camera saying it was unlawful to photograph people in public, i told her this was rubbish. we agreed to come with her and we sat in the back of a police car, she radioed back to the station to check our details, i explained to her the law regarding photography and handed over a MOO card, i asked to take her picture and she said no. We were free to go with no charge. I may press charges for unlawful detention and physical assault by the security guards, watch this space.

"luckily my friend videoed some of this so it can be used in evidence.

"Here it is"

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:: Dan 24.4.08 [Arc] [1 comments] [links to this post] ::
Glad you brought this up, because I am so angry and frightened by what happened to him, I totally can't address it properly. To begin with, I share some Flickr pools with that guy, so we're taking photographs in the same genre. And I go out with my camera alone (yay, antisocial). I have no idea what I would do if this happened to me (eg: the last Bristol Flickr meetup had to be moved because the people in the place they went to were very anti-camera). What a fucking nightmare.
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