ORANGE COUNTY, Fla.– A woman called Eyewitness News after a cellphone recording nearly got her arrested, and its raising new questions about what rights citizens have when it comes to recording deputies on duty.
Bethany, who did not want to give her last name, was approached by an Orange County
Sheriff's Deputy conducting a traffic stop at the Citgo gas station near Semoran Boulevard and Old Chaney Road.
The video shows the deputy telling her she is not allowed to videotape him.
Bethany said she pulled out her phone and started recording when two deputies pulled over a car at the pump next to hers and was put in handcuffs moments later.
I told him, Dont take my phone, and then he took my phone and put me in handcuffs in front of my daughter and little sister, she said.
Bethany believes she would have been arrested, but deputies noticed the kids in her car, so they issued her a trespass warning, but she believes she was in the right.
She was in a public place pumping gas and in the right, as long as she did not interfere with their investigation to record what was going on, said WFTVs legal expert, Belvin Perry. Record it, but dont get in an argument with a law enforcement officer on the street about doing that.
Channel 9s Roy Ramos contacted the Sheriffs Office regarding the incident, but they did not respond.
Bethany said she started recording because she felt deputies would treat the driver with more respect if they saw her record them.