Society

Purdue Police Throw Student Journalist To Ground, Detain Him For Three Hours

| by Michael Allen

A student journalist at Purdue University was thrown to the ground by police, had his camera taken away and was detained for three hours for trying to cover Tuesday's on-campus shooting by suspect Cody Cousins.

According to The Exponent, the campus newspaper, their photo editor Michael Takeda was in the Electrical Engineering Building taking pictures. The area had not been closed by Purdue University Police at the time.

After slamming Takeda to the ground, Purdue police seized his camera and photos. Police also detained and questioned Takeda for about three hours.

The police did not return his camera equipment until Frank LoMonte, executive director of the Student Press Law Center, intervened on Takeda's behalf.

“[The law] specifically says that the police cannot confiscate or search where journalists keep their unpublished work product unless they first go in front of a judge and give the journalist the chance to argue his side,” LoMonte told The Exponent.

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According to TechDirt.com, an "exigent situation" exception in the law allows police to seize and keep press equipment when the safety of the police or public is immediately threatened.

Sources: The Exponent and TechDirt.com