LAFAYETTE, LA (WAFB) - The ACLU of Louisiana has filed a lawsuit that addresses police investigations and the right to cellphone privacy.
According to a press release, the lawsuit is based on an incident involving a Lafayette mother and the arrest of her son.
Chelline Carter alleges she was attempting to take a picture of her son sitting in the back of the police car when the arresting officer took her phone and deleted the photo.
"The officer, Shannon Brasseaux, took her phone from her hand, accessed and searched it, and deleted the photo – all without a warrant or consent," states the press release. "Carter was also threatened with arrest."
The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana.
"Everyone has a right to photograph what they see, including actions of the police as long as they don't interfere," said Marjorie R. Esman, ACLU of Louisiana Executive Director. "In addition, cellphones are by law private and can't be searched without a warrant. Ms. Carter had every right to take and keep the photos."
The lawsuit is seeking an injunction that would prevent the Lafayette Police Department from being able to search someone's phone with a warrant.