Carlos Miller, of the online media outfit Photography is not a Crime (PINAC), is no stranger when it comes to dealing with police “legally.” But after recently publishing a public servant’s office phone number, he is being threatened with a felony investigation for “Witness Intimidation.”
Miller has learned the hard way that police and public officials do not like to be recorded, as his website consistently publishes videos of police misconduct. Americans are often told that, “if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear” when they complain about the NSA monitoring them constantly, but that seems to not apply to police. Now Miller is being investigated for “witness intimidation”, a felony, after he posted the publicly listed work number of a Boston Police Department employee on his website.
Miller was contacted by a producer who was charged with felony wiretapping at the end of October. The producer, Taylor Hardy, had recorded an interview with the Boston Police spokeswoman. The video begins mid-conversation, but the producer claims the spokeswoman, Angelene Richardson, knew she was being recorded. Hardy had a problem with his recording device and lost the first part of the conversation. Richardson, Director of Media Relations for the Boston Police Department, claims she didn’t know she was being recorded, and Hardy is now facing felony charges.
Miller asked his readers to contact Richardson about Hardy’s case. He published Richardson’s office number on his website. Now Miller is being investigated for “witness intimidation”. From PINAC:
The complaint that Hardy received today, posted below, states that he must attend a hearing on November 14. He spoke to a Boston attorney today who informed him that he didn’t have to show up, but that would lead to a trial.
Hardy, however, is considering flying up there for the hearing to try and get his case dismissed without having to go to trial.
Maybe we can call or email Richardson to persuade her to drop the charges against Hardy considering she should assume all her conversations with reporters are on the record unless otherwise stated. Her listed number is (617) 343-4520.
Richardson’s contact information at the Boston PD is public. I tested this theory with a quick Google search:
I clicked on the very first link, and found Richardson’s phone number:
It took Google less than a second to find Richardson’s phone number for me, but apparently the Boston PD doesn’t like journalists sharing public information. Miller is now being investigated for “witness intimidation”, a felony that could result in 10 years in prison, all because he posted Richardson’s work email and work phone number online.
Miller published the complaint on Facebook on Friday:
“The Boston Police Department is trying to charge me with witness intimidation, a felony that can land me in prison for ten years, because I posted the name, office number and work email of a police public information officer on my blog.
That’s what it has come down to, folks. A tax-funded public official whose main job is to provide public information to the general public is now claiming she was victimized because she received calls and emails at work from the general public who found her information on my blog, which I happened to find on Google with a few key strokes.”
The Boston PD is also threatening to arrest any who contact Richardson, the department’s spokesperson, about this event:
Detective Nick Moore also assured me he would do the same to any PINAC readers if they continue to contact departmental spokeswoman Angelene Richardson as they have been doing since yesterday.
“I can go and get warrants for every person who called her,” he said during a telephone conversation earlier this evening. “It’s an annoyance. It’s an act of intimidation.”
Richardson is paid almost $80,000 a year (according to public documents) to speak for the Boston PD to media and the public, but now it’s intimidation to contact her at her public office? Let’s let her know how we feel about that. Her number is listed below.
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Director of Media Relations for the Boston Police Department
Phone: (617) 343-4520