SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – A federal appeals court says a reporter who was allegedly roughed up by San Francisco police while filming a protest cannot sue the department for wrongful arrest.

The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday upheld a lower court ruling dismissing Mark Burdett’s false arrest claim.

The appeals court said Burdett was standing in the street, so police could have arrested him for jaywalking.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that Burdett was filming a protest against the Iraq war in March 2004 for the Indybay news collective when an officer accused him of knocking over a motorcycle. He says other officers threw him to the ground and pummeled him while handcuffing him.

Burdett’s lawyer, Ben Rosenfeld, says police later concocted the claim that Burdett was jaywalking.

(© 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

Comments (4)
  1. PEDRO says:

    OK then everyone who respects their freedoms and fair treatment use their cell phones and cameras to record all law enforcement actions… There is more then 1 way to skin a cat.. Then upload to internet let these films speak… If they can do this to the media what chance does the regular public have.. San Jose calls filming police illegal, so people just upload to u -tube or the like let films speak. It has worked… Who overseas the police? WE DO.. ITS part of living in a democracy. If we don’t do any thing then we deserve what we get.. WE THE PEOPLE DECIDE..

    1. Ed Gouls says:

      You better be careful doing that. Many states will not alow this and have successfully sued people who have fimed police actions.

  2. PEDRO says:

    OK think about it. If the police normally respond to jay walkers like this??? I did not know we lived in China or a Soviet block country. You cannot record police actions its a government secret. How dare you even to try. Just shut up, go home, pay taxes and leave us alone.. Thats what it comes down to.. 1984 movie comes to mind. SAD VERY SAD.

  3. CMV says:

    Hey PEDRO, when a police officer asks me to leave the area, I leave. And so should the media. Let the police do their jobs without getting in their way.
    Burdett should have been fined for getting in the way.
    We need to support our police, because morons like you are the first to call when your neighbors dogs defecates on your lawn, you moron

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