Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Tuesday night

So tonight's big story is the fact that Spring Fling has been postponed until next Wednesday.

Also, temple student Drew Mathagan won 110,000 thou on Wheel of Fortune. Bad ass.

Since this is mostly all of tonight's news, here is an interview with temple student Brian Romanelli, who was recently at the center of some controversy after he received academic probation for taking pictures of Temple police making an arrest on Broad Street.

  1. So Brian, besides that you have perfectly legal freedom to take pictures in a public place, why were you taking pictures of the suspect and the arrest?

Well the man that they were arresting had beforehand been leaning against the fence with his penis in his hands mumbling things to all of us on the lawn. I happened to have my camera so I was taking pictures. The arrest was just the follow-up to this lewd and despicable behavior, I couldn’t just let the series go with this bum walking off into the crowd.

  1. How up in the police’s grill were you? After they asked you to move away, what went through your head in terms of compliance and what did you do next?

I was not obscenely close to them, you can see the pictures yourself online (http://www.box.net/shared/rc7qioa12u). It was probably about ten feet. I pretty much expected them to tell me off in the first place, but I knew it was legal so I figured I’d go up and give it a shot. In one of them you can see the officer approaching me when she so rudely asked me leave. She meant business, so I walked away, because we all know how they tend to skew things when they don’t get their way, but I snapped a few more shots on my way off. A big thing with cops is their intimidation factor, if you don’t let them intimidate you, they get real angry real fast and start trying to scare you with loud voices and threats. It’s comical, in a way, watching them get angry when you don’t cower beneath the badge. That was my thought process, don’t let these head cases scare you.

  1. Why do you feel the cops took such offense to you taking pictures?

They claim I was interfering with their investigation, than later that this man was crazy and he could of snapped at the sight of my camera. Who knows really, maybe Officer Evans forgot to put on makeup on that morning, or Officer Besa didn’t want to be seen next to a woman who was a whole head taller than himself, him being an authority figure and all.

  1. Now the Temple News article says the cop grabbed your wallet out of your pocket. The UDC hearing says you failed to properly identify yourself. Did the cop ever ask you to present ID before grabbing it from you?

He did ask me, and as I began to get it out I asked what it was exactly that I did wrong. That was when he picked me up and decided to get it himself.

  1. The panel also stated that you failed to “comply with the instructions or directions of a person acting in duly authorized university capacity.” Did they expand and specifically state which instructions you failed to follow?

No, they simply left it at that. But they were sure to ask me if I knew who was the authority figure in the situation, because those are who I am to obey.

  1. Which do you feel is more outrageous: the cops actions or the panel’s decision?

Well I was really not too surprised by the way the cops acted, I was appalled that they were doing so, but in a way I almost expected it I guess. I really didn’t go in to this thinking that anyone would be on my side, but I was especially surprised by the arrogance of the two officers when it came to the hearing itself. Neither one seemed to take it seriously as they went in with attitudes of proving me guilty and getting out of there. To them I was just a stupid kid living in the big city now, unaware of the criminals and derelicts out there to get me at every turn.

  1. How do you feel about spring fling being postponed?

I’m pretty indifferent, I have more work this week anyway. What is exactly is spring fling, does anyone really need a reason to drink all day?

  1. Knowing this is being read by hundreds of awesome, socially aware, extremely intelligent Cherry and What readers, is there anything you would like to say or request?

Don’t take shit from the cops. I don’t mean to generalize, but most of them are self-serving assholes in the first place who just seem to get a kick out of wearing a utility belt. I’d say it’s about time we start getting our side out there, Temple is 20,000+ strong, if I can make a stink with my little case think about what we can get done if we banded together. You should always stand for what you believe in, and don’t be afraid to cause a little bit of disorder every now and again - it seems to keep everyone on their toes.

1 comment:

mnemosa.designs said...


please send this to him and make it public!

photographer's rights are important and when it comes to the law, there are very few instances where they can actually detain you, take away the camera or film, or make you delete the pictures.
I think that the actions of the police and the university were extreme in this case.