Media questions first-amendment auditors


I think it’s fair to say that some of these folks are simply trying to evoke a response from the police in order to bait them into a confrontation (though I don’t think it’s accurate that they’re “known for getting into people’s faces”…the police are coming up to them, not the other way around). I also think it’s fair to say that officers sometimes embarrass themselves and their departments in the way that they respond. I guess my question would be…if someone is engaging in a legal activity, such as recording what they can see from a public sidewalk, why would you talk to them at all? Someone engaging in this kind of activity knows that what they’re doing is legal, and is well aware of their rights…the whole reason they’re doing it is to see if YOU’RE aware of their rights too. An officer most certainly can walk up to them and initiate a conversation, but if they’re rebuffed, and the person doesn’t want to talk to them, that should be the end of it. No pressing the issue, no demanding ID, no threat of arrest. The Commissioner that they talked to mentioned potential lawsuits, settlements, and getting officers fired. If any of those things happen, is that the auditor’s fault? No! I believe there is room for improvement on both sides of the equation. As a citizen, I should be mindful of the law, and respectful of those whose job it is to enforce it. Those whose job it is to enforce the law have a duty to uphold the public trust. Bothering people who aren’t breaking the law is not the way to do this. I’d even venture to say that once these auditors see that they’re not going to get a reaction from the police, they’ll go away. Until or unless that happens, officers will continue to become YouTube stars, and cities will continue to pay out large settlements.
The cops always initiate the contact. Just leave law abiding citizens alone. The video never points out that the cop had no right to touch a person, unless they are breaking the law.

All the cops have to do is obey the law. Same goes for civilians. If they did that there would be no problems.

The law enforcement community brought this on themselves. can you imagine how boring it would be to watch police officers behaving correctly ?
I find it amazing how these auditors are PROVING that cops are EXTREMELY IGNORANT to the law and what’s legal.
If they have done nothing unlawful, leave them be, don’t react and they will leave you alone. The police in these videos are often ignorant of the law or just belligerent.
‘How to handle 1st Amendment Auditors?’ There is nothing to ‘handle’, when someone isn’t breaking the law they don’t have to talk to police or identify, so run along and finish mopping the floor at the station cops. This is part of the problem, that police think they have to ‘find a way’ to control every single person they see.
When I first started watching these videos, I took issue with what the auditors were doing and then as I watched more and educated myself, I started to understand their motives. There are some auditors who take to the streets with a clear agenda and bias against the police and do everything they can to provoke them so I tend to not watch them but there are others who truly seem to be standing up for their rights and are more than happy to find officers that respect what they are doing as opposed to hoping to find bad officers. My favorite auditor is Amagansett Press, for example. It still baffles me that police academies aren’t teaching basic constitutional law and that departments aren’t educating their officers about basic first amendment rights. A guy with a camera on a public sidewalk isn’t a threat and since we don’t live in Russia, he isn’t required to produce “papers” because you demanded them.
Its through the first amendment auditors that i have come to realise the importance of the constitution and how it can work for the little guy. I don’t know why they’re being presented as aggressors, yet its usually those in authority that are the aggressors.
These auditors are protected everyone’s rights. You might not like them but that is what they are doing.
As time passes we don’t automatically get more and more rights. Out rights erode away. That’s why as a former law enforcement officer I support audits.
When you abuse and disrespect the citizens so long this is what you get and they’ll like how the tables turned a little bit. Now they have to be held accountable for their actions which could be recorded back in the days.
4:30 officer asks “If they’re truly the media, then aren’t they subject to the same rules as what apply to you?” This is the crux of why the mainstream media sides with the cops on this one. They don’t like “amateurs” stealing their viewers. They feeeeel that it’s an insult to THEIR profession. The “rules” that the officer is referring to are not laws. They are company policies. If the reporter doesn’t follow those rules, he will get fired, not arrested.


I love the way the news reporter says that the auditors are known for getting in people’s faces. She must not watch many videos does she not see how the people walk right up to their cameras and get into the auditor’s faces. I do agree that some auditors push some buttons on some people but that still doesn’t give people the right to violate their first amendment rights.The whole purpose of the Constitution is to protect our rights. How many news reporters push their camera and microphones right up into people’s faces to get their story. Double standard. Because they work for a major news outlet they think they are better than everyday normal citizens who go out and report what they see going on in America and reporting corruption that most news reporters don’t have the where for all to do on their own. They are paid by a news agency and are only allowed to report on what they feel is news worthy. They have no free will of their own. Unless it’s a live video all their work is edited so as not to compromise or offend whoever or whatever they are reporting on.
My question. Where’s the cops when a tv crew with cameras are at the same place the auditor was at? Why are “they” not concerned? Isn’t this suspicious activity (as they say)? Where’s the ID check? So this is the cops warning other cops to be on your best behavior when a camera is out? If cops have nothing to hide why attempt to make a CONSTITUTIONALLY protected act villainous?
The reporter is right in front of the military installation. Wonder if they called the cops on him?
The cops need to smarten up and be able to tell the difference between someone that is a real security risk and someone who is just doing an audit. As soon as they realize they’re dealing with one of these auditors they need to just say “thank you, carry-on citizen.”
Auditors like him have NOT broken the law in any way. When a cop violates the rights of auditors it is their own actions that has earned their firings and lawsuits. The under sherriff was the law breaker and the same law applies to him. Putting hands on someone without cause is Not legal. The badge doesnt earn them extra rights.

“get a settlement from the city and possibly get the officer terminated”.

A good auditor does not leave to provoke a reaction. The reaction is left entirely up to the officer.
This news report is a perfect example of how biased news is and how it does not report facts anymore, it reports feelings



It’s unfortunate that both the reporters and even the auditor himself misrepresented the entire auditing community. There are bad auditors that intentionally provoke and unnecessarily escalate encounters, but the overall goal is to never to do that–usually the police will do that themselves out of ignorance of the law.


This news agency should be ashamed of such a biased report. As a news agency, you would think they would be on the side of free speech and press 🤦🏼‍♂
I love how the news guy ends the video by getting a shot of himself standing in front of what appears to be a military installation. As if his 1st Amendment right to do so is somehow different than anyone else’s. The hypocrisy is staggering.
It’s funny how they left out that if the cops were just calm, professionals following the law, citizen’s rights, and proper police policy, NONE of this would even be an issue. Yep, they sure left that out of the story.
If the officers aren’t doing anything wrong, they have nothing to worry about.
When the government becomes transparent and cops stop abusing free citizens. We won’t need auditors, until then auditors keep up the good work.
I love how they make it seem like recording a video on a sidewalk is the scariest thing, while also recording a video on the sidewalk. Oh cause your camera is bigger? Or you have a news jacket on? How is that any different?
WXYZ should be embarrassed by this report.
“They tricked me into doing something wrong by checking if we were doing something wrong”
Why are these ‘trained professionals” so easily, and so often, provoked by ordinary citizens with a camera? Why do these ‘trained professionals’ so easily, and so often, ‘take the bait’ despite extensive training, re-training and cross training? Why are these ‘trained professionals’ either ignorant of, or purposely ignore, the very laws which they have sworn to protect? Why do these ‘trained professionals’ first escalate, and then retaliate, over such simple constitutionally protected activities?
love how they say “1st amendment rights” so sarcastically. I was on the side of thinking these guys were frauds at first. after watching a lot, i am so glad they are doing what they do. These “officials” are not the little victims they try to act like.
“It is all his first amendment right”, said with a nod and a wink. You can just see the disdain the reporter has for someone other than the “news” exercising their rights.
I love how the reporter feels as entitled and as above the law as government officials do. They think they are better than an on the street indie journalist running their own business and creating an audience.
“File a law suit. They’re gonna get a settlement from a city. They’re possibly going to get the officer terminated” So they’re holding people responsible for their illegal activities! Got it!
Law enforcement uses “bait tactics” all the time……but don’t like it when they think it’s being used on them. SMH
“Known for getting in people’s faces.” Not sure I’ve ever seen an auditor get in anyone’s face. I’ve seen people get in auditors’ faces.
When you’ve witnessed enough injustice perpetrated by the employees that are paid by your tax dollars, and when you see your tax dollars frivolously passed out, like candy, to those that have no accountability for their actions, then there should be no surprise when people start testing the system for its effectiveness. If the auditors are exposing flaws in the system, then pointing an accusatory finger at them is nothing more than an attempt to justify a broken system.
Love that they interviewed the sheriff that literally assaulted the auditor!! Did he go to jail? No…… trying to make auditors into Villians and literally only catch cops breaking the law!!
If the city is offering a settlement and the officer is losing his job then the cop was was violating rights and breaking laws. Without the auditors would continue with his crooked ways
Every single thing the police officers, the chief, and the anti Auditors say, is also true about themselves, and that’s why there’s auditors! When the cops investigate themselves, it doesn’t work out very well!
Some of these auditors may appear to be annoying, however they’re willing to reveal how many government agencies throughout this country that are not constitutionally compliant. Keep up the good work! We need more of them.
This reports bias is clearly a result of them being out done in holding authority accountable by amateurs.
The fact that they have to send a mass email out to government employees telling them to not violate but respect the rights of American citizens shows how messed up the justice system really is.
They are known for getting in people’s faces.” Actually, they are known for being confronted by other people.
Love it how the tele-prompter told the reporter to call the audits “verbal attacks” . I KNOW that wasn’t the verbiage she’d use. It was forced upon her.
Finally the cops are starting to think about what they are doing
4:30 Here’s the thing, they don’t come up and put their hands all over cops, they don’t walk up to cops trying to dominate every encounter. Some of them may, but the majority of them obviously don’t. And so what if they are trying to provoke these cops? if the cops can’t handle their temper around these guys, even when they know they are being filmed, how well do you think they handle that temper with people when their isn’t a camera around?!?! This video being shown with the cop being interviewed does NOT paint him in a good light and it’s a perfect example of why 1st amendment auditors are needed. Oh yeah, talking about the Freedom News Now guy when he said “they beat their wives” or whatever. He was trying to provoke an angry response, because cops are PAID to keep their cool when dealing with people like him. Who cares if they don’t actually beat their wives, I’m sure some of them don’t! Regardless, the police lie to the public all the time trying to provoke the response they want from us. The only difference is if they get the response they want, we end up in prison for a long time whether we’re guilty or not… But that’s ok I suppose.
Last cop went hands on as soon as he stepped out of the door. That cop is the reason why we need the auditors.
The irony of explaining how the auditor filmed that tank place out front, to only do it in the last segment of the video themselves but with a way bigger camera 😂