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    24, July 2023
    Civil Rights Organization Sues NYPD for Arresting Journalist Exercising his First Amendment Rights 

Civil Rights Organization Sues NYPD for Arresting Journalist Exercising his First Amendment Rights 

July 24, 2023 
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Civil Rights Organization Sues NYPD for Arresting Journalist Exercising his First Amendment Rights 
YouTube’s “Long Island Audit” Seeks Justice in “Right to Record” Case 

New York, NY – LatinoJustice PRLDEF – a national civil rights organization that advocates for and defends the constitutional rights of the Latino community and beyond– has filed a lawsuit against the New York Police Department over its illegal policy of arresting those who record in the public lobbies of police precincts.  
According to Reyes v. City of New York, 23-cv-6369 the NYPD illegal policy was put in place in 2018 and violates the First Amendment of the United States Constitution protecting civilians’ right to record police, the state Right to Record Act, and the New York City Right to Record Act. LatinoJustice PRLDEF is representing SeanPaul Reyes, an activist and journalist known on YouTube as the “Long Island Audit”. Reyes works on promoting First Amendment accountability and police transparency through civilian recording. On April 4, 2023, Mr. Reyes was arrested in the 61st Precinct in Brooklyn (Bensonhurst) when he stood in the precinct lobby in a line for people waiting to report something at the front window. He was able to record the encounter up to the moment he was handcuffed. 
“When I was arrested, I was simply doing my civic duty, helping expose an issue that my community has been harmed by for far too long,” said activist and journalist SeanPaul Reyes. “I was not interfering with police by simply recording my surroundings. It's time this NYPD policy of harassing civilians over recording, and arresting individuals in retaliation is ended once and for all.”  

A report of the NYPD Monitor, released on October 17, 2022, demonstrates that recording official police activity does in fact deter misconduct. LatinoJustice also released a study of CCRB investigations in which the agency found that officers lied during their interviews with CCRB investigators. 181 officers whom CCRB found lied in an interview between 2010 and 2020, ninety-seven were caught because their statement had been contradicted by a video or audio recording. 
NYPD has a history of arresting people simply for challenging their authority, and as a matter of policy for recording police officers on official business,” said Andrew Case Supervising Counsel at LatinoJustice PRLDEF who is also representing Mr. Reyes. “This resistance to civilian recording continues even though it is unlawful. Civilian recording of police activity ensures accountability and serves in the investigations of officer that lead to department wide reform. LatinoJustice stands with Mr. Reyes and will work to ensure both his “right to record” and that of our community is protected and enforced.” 
The lawsuit, filed in federal court in the Southern District of of New York, is seeking an injunction to address the NYPD policy of prohibiting recording inside the publicly accessible areas of police precincts.’ 

Facebook Live of Today's Press Conference HERE 


About LatinoJustice 
LatinoJustice PRLDEF works to create a more just society by using and challenging the rule of law to secure transformative, equitable and accessible justice, by empowering our community and by fostering leadership through advocacy and education. For 50 years, LatinoJustice PRLDEF has acted as an advocate against injustices throughout the country. To learn more about LatinoJustice, visit