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Sharma v. NYPD et al. (Defending right to photograph and film public property)

This case involves an individual’s right to photograph and film public property. In May 2005, Rakesh Sharma was taken into custody by the New York City Police Department for filming with a handheld camera. While at the precinct, detectives, without a warrant, viewed the footage on Sharma’s camera. In November 2005, when Sharma returned to New York to film, he was told he needed a permit. However, when he applied for a permit, it was denied.

On January 10, 2006, the NYCLU filed a complaint in District Court on behalf of Sharma, alleging that his First and Fourth Amendment rights were violated. The complaint asked the Court to grant declaratory and injunctive relief so that he could film freely. It also asks that damages be rewarded for the NYPD’s unlawful treatment of Sharma. On April 19, 2007, the plaintiff reached a settlement with the Mayor’s Office of Film, Theater and Broadcasting (MOFTB). MOFTB agreed to pay Sharma $1,000 and his attorney fees. On May 15, 2007, the plaintiff reached a settlement with the NYPD. The NYPD agreed to pay Sharma $14,000 plus attorney fees.

S.D.N.Y, Index No. 06-cv-0166 (direct) 

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