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Illinois Law Does Not Prohibit Recording On-Duty Law Enforcement

On Twitter, it started with circulating the headline of an article published on The Free Thought Project titled “Illinois Just Made it a Felony for Its Citizens to Record the Police and the Media is Silent.” The article claimed that Illinois passed a law making it a felony to record police officers. That is not factual. The emotional state of many Americans with the thought that a law prohibits the video recording of police officers using excessive force, was at the forefront of the headline that misrepresents the amended Illinois law.

Snopes has already printed about the apparent confusion of the law, which isn’t a new law at all but rather, an amendment to an existing law and does not prohibit the recording of on-duty police officers.

The Free Thought article states that the wording from the legislation is vague, and it included the following;

(a) Eavesdropping, for a first offense, is a Class 4 felony (from Ch. 38, par. 14-4) and, for a second or subsequent offense, is a Class 3 felony.

(b) The eavesdropping of an oral conversation or an electronic communication of any
law enforcement officer, State’s Attorney, Assistant State’s Attorney, the Attorney General, Assistant Attorney General, or a judge, while in the performance of his or her official duties, if not authorized by this Article or proper court order, is a Class 3 felony, and for a second or subsequent offenses, is a Class 2 felony.

Had readers clicked the link to the Bill, they would have read two words that should have stood out.  Those two words are;

  1. eavesdropping

  2. private

eavesdropping2When I read the first tweet reporting this, (and expressing disgust that Illinois would legislate such a law), I didn’t respond.  I didn’t respond because my first impression that anyone reading the word “eavesdropping” would understand its meaning.  I was wrong, not taking into consideration that people passing the tweet around are not residents of Illinois understanding how “eavesdropping” is defined in Illinois law. Read the rest of this entry

Did Trayvon Martin Call 911?

George Zimmerman

On March 27, 2012, ABC News affiliates reported that 17 yr. old Trayvon Martin called 911 seconds before he was shot to death by George Zimmerman in Sanford, Florida.  The news report stated that the 911 recording captured George Zimmerman’s voice in the background, and that the FBI is enhancing the audio of the 911 call to determine what Zimmerman is saying to Trayvon. Later, that published report was removed from the internet – but not before someone saved it.

People have wondered if it’s true that Trayvon called 911 while he struggled to get away from George Zimmerman’s grip seconds before Zimmerman fired a hollow point bullet into Trayvon’s heart.

Later, the ABC affiliate said that the reporter misspoke, and that the 911 audio he was alluding to was a 911 call made by an ear-witness in the gated community where Trayvon was shot and killed by George Zimmerman, (GZ).  Hence, we now know that the 911 call where GZ is heard speaking to Trayvon in the background is a call made by a resident/witness.   Those are witnesses number 11 and Jeremy, witness 20.

Emphasis:  There was an effort to identify the voice of the person screaming for help.   THIS ENHANCEMENT IS NOT TO DETERMINE THAT VOICE.  It’s to determine the words spoken by George Zimmerman to Trayvon Martin.

Listening to the audio of that call is like listening to a 4-piece band all playing different songs.  There is the 911 operator; the woman on the phone with the 911 operator; the husband telling his wife to tell 911 to hurry up; and the screams of pain and help in the background.  Each voice is playing a different song.  After figuring out what song each instrument is playing and listening to the audio again, you find that there is a 5th instrument.

No wonder the public did not notice this previously!  Other than GZ’s non-emergency call reporting a suspicious person, the public had not heard his voice.  GZ has since made sure that the public knows his voice – from his first bond hearing; to his jailhouse phone recordings; to his interview with Sean Hannity; to his website; his has made his voice known.

In the background of the 911 call of Witness 11, the instrument is now identified as that of George Zimmerman.  He is not screaming.  He is talking.  His words are difficult to make-out with the exception of one word that he almost shouts.  That word is “fuck.”  Could this be what Mark Osterman was actually referring to in his Fox interview when saying that the FBI confirmed, “by a 90 to 95% match,” that the voice captured on a 911 call during the altercation is Zimmerman’s?

Just as GZ has appropriated Trayvon’s cries for help to himself, he appropriated his words to Trayvon, making it reasonable to believe that it was GZ who cupped his hands over Trayvon’s mouth while saying, “Shut the fuck up.”  That in fact, GZ does a Freudian slip during his re-enactment when stating, regarding Trayvon, “… he put his hand on his nose, no on my nose …” (At 9 minutes 20 seconds of the 12 minute, 27 second re-enactment video.)

George Zimmerman’s voice is captured in the background of the 911 call at 7:16:48-49.  Also keep in mind that the audio released to the public redacts the caller’s personal information as the agonizing screams for help are heard in the background.  George Zimmerman’s voice might also be heard during those redacted moments.

The State Prosecutors know the evidence they have to convict GZ.   Make no mistake about it.  Let the immunity hearing begin!

The 911 call of witness number 11:

All audio recordings of witness statements are on manybuddies’ Youtube Channel.

http://www.youtube.com/user/manybuddies?feature=results_main

Sources for ABC News report:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R6oxXu5vCRc&feature=relmfu

http://sandrarose.com/2012/03/did-trayvon-martin-call-911-before-he-was-shot/

Blackbutterly7

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