JP recorded a brief interview with Chris before he turned himself in to be arrested for the first time in his life. Chris points out in the interview that he’s only turning himself in so the cops don’t bust in during his fiancee’s upcoming home birth and take him away then:
In a six page decision issued this week, NH Hillsborough superior court judge Gillian L. Abramson dismissed the misdemeanor wiretapping charge against Alfredo Valentin – affirming the right to record police in public includes secret recordings. The judge cites both the Glik and Gericke cases which were important federal cases affirming the right to record police in public. The state argued in this case, that since the recording was secret, the right to record doesn’t apply in NH, where the wiretapping statute is ridiculously oppressive. The judge smacked that claim down:
the Court finds that the First Amendment protects secretly filming police in public, for the same reasons that the First Amendment generally protects filming police. The public has the right to gather and disseminate information about the police.
Free State Project early mover and attorney Brandon Ross is Valentin’s lawyer (Ross has previously beaten wiretapping charges at the NH supreme court.) and had this to say, in an exclusive interview for Free Keene, about the judge’s decision: “By charging him with a felony, the state destroyed my client’s career–and made things much worse with this wild goose chase prosecution. I’m glad the court wasn’t fooled by the state’s manifestly incorrect representations about the law. I look forward to him getting his day in federal court.”
Attorney Brandon Ross
Ross also excoriated the NH legislature for their inaction on fixing the horrible wiretapping statutes, saying, “This never needed to happen. Numerous bills have been brought to the legislature to fix this. Each time, the legislature has failed to act to bring simple, necessary clarity to a law which police are continually abusing. But the NH chiefs of police scare them each time, and nothing happens. The resulting litigation from that spineless failure to act, does nothing but inconvenience citizens and cost taxpayers.”
If there are only a few bad apples in policing, how do they rise to the top of the ranks? The last case of a corrupt police chief reported on this blog, less than one year ago, involved New London, NH’s then-chief threatening college girls into stripping so he could photograph them nude in the police department basement.
Now, in the case of Canterbury police chief John Laroche, he’s accused of multiple cases of sexual assault (rape) against a teenage girl. To be clear, the girl was of the age of consent, however Laroche was in a position of authority over her, as he was in charge of the Police Explorers program, where teenagers explore whether they would like a career in law enforcement. Apparently, it’s also not uncommon for them to explore their sexuality with the officers.
Sadly, Ademo did not realize this as he’d not seen any official paperwork the entire time he was in custody in Kansas. Considering he was expecting to be held until extradition to Indiana and further held in Indiana’s jail pre-trial, he decided to have his friends and supporters bail him out. Only while he was getting bailed did he discover that he was not actually facing any felonies. So, his friends unknowingly paid $800 to a bail bondsman (non-refundable) to likely have him released a day early. (His hearing in front of a judge was to be Monday, where he’d likely have been released, as Noblesville will not extradite for that misdemeanor charge.) Ademo commented in an extended interview on tonight’s Free Talk Live that had he been fully informed, he’d have chosen to sit in jail and not be bailed out. We had him on-air to discuss his situation for most of our second hour (click here to jump straight to the interview).
So, that’s the good news. The bad news is he’s still in jail, likely until Monday afternoon’s scheduled court appearance in Kansas, where he was arrested for the warrant that the Shawnee, IN police claimed was for a felony.