Debate erupts over cell phone video of Silva beating by officers. Witness: “I can still hear him.” (

May 10, 2013 12:00 am

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Kern County, CA police officers improperly confiscated the cell phones of two witnesses who had used them to record law enforcement officers fatally beating a man earlier that night. The witnesses called police to report the beating, telling them they had recorded the event with their cell phones. Police arrived at their home late the next morning, and demanded the phones without producing warrants. Recording law enforcement officers in the course of their official duty is a First Amendment-protected activity that serves as an important mechanism for holding police accountable to the law.

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