Michigan journalist arrested after recording police arrest on public streetBy Mason White 4:04 AM July 17, 2013
|Scene of the incident|
By: Eva Fett
(Scroll down for video) A Michigan journalist was clearly bullied by police after being arrested for recording police action on a public street, according to police reports in Michigan.
Now, Detroit Police internal affairs officers have initiated an investigation following the arrest of a photographer, who was recording the police action in public, last week.
Police said they are investigating photographer Mandi Wright and the actions of the officer, who ordered her to stop recording. The officer also grabbed away Wright’s phone. They are also investigating the disappearance of a memory card from her iPhone. Police also locked her up in the same cell where the crime suspect she had been recording.
Wright, 47, was arrested Thursday after she and a reporter went to an arrest scene near Woodbridge and Riopelle, east of the city. Police at the scene said that Wright fought with an officer after he had confiscated her iPhone, but Wright said she was concentrating on taking her video and did not realize that the man who took her phone was a police officer. Wright was handcuffed and put in an interrogation room with the suspect.
Detroit Police Chief James Craig confirmed Monday that the department is conducting an internal affairs investigation. Deputy Chief James Tolbert said no conclusions have been drawn, but if the investigation proves that she was put in a room with the suspect, it would be a serious violation of department policy.
He refused to name the officer.
Wright was released six and a half hours after her arrest without charges. She said she was wearing the media ID around her neck when she went out with reporter Kathleen Gray to record videos as part of a training project.
Wright said she did not know the man approaching her was a police officer and thought he was a civilian. He did not identify himself, and his clothes had no police markings.
The man grabbed her arm and grabbed the phone. Eventually, the police returned the phone but the SIM card was removed. Still, the video remained on the phone’s internal memory.