Serial Cop Photographer Goes to Trial Twice This Week

May 7, 2014 | Andy Cush

Photographing a police officer is perfectly legal, and yet somehow Shawn Thomas keeps getting arrested for it.

Yesterday, Thomas went to trial for an incident in which he was arrested for recording video of a police officer in a Crown Heights subway station. Officer Rojas, the arresting officer — who can be seen manhandling Thomas in a bystander’s video — didn’t show up, and that trial has been rescheduled for June 17.

Today, the photographer returned to court for an arrest last October. Photography Is Not a Crime gives a detailed account of what went down:

And Wednesday, Thomas is back in court again over another arrest from last October where he was accused of recording inside a courtroom, which he never did, so they charged him with disorderly conduct, accusing him of using profanity, which he never did, seizing his phone and demanding he provide them with his passcode, which he never did.

That arrest, which he describes in great detail on his blog,  took place outside a courtroom within minutes after a judge dismissed a case against him from a June 2013 arrest where he was video recording outside an NYPD police station in an attempt to identify the cops who had arrested in January of that year for recording them making an aggressive arrest, which he also goes into detail on that same blog post, especially about a dirty cop named  Sgt. Mohammed Karimzada.

And he only resorted to recording the police station (video below) after the district attorney’s office continually refused to provide the names of the arresting officers during the discovery process, even though they falsely accused him of possessing a stun gun, which is illegal in New York City,  not that they were ever able to produce said weapon.

No word yet on the outcome of today’s hearing.