Hypocritical Police Issue Seatbelt Tickets and Harass Minnesota CopBlocker (Video)

Andrew J Henderson, who’s active with Minnesota CopBlock and has a number of police related videos on his YouTube channel – The Drewks, is no stranger to filming the police. In January 2014 Pete covered Andrew’s trial for “legally filming police” and again when he was found not guilty in February 2014. Today, Andrew messaged me stating:

On Monday, May 18th, various local law enforcement agencies conducted a seat belt enforcement detail in Saint Paul where officers stood on 2 street corners and looked for drivers not wearing their seat belts. When spotted, they would radio to their coworkers and colleagues to pull them over and issue them citations. In a 4-hour period they made 227 traffic stops and issued 244 citations, totaling more than $15,000 in fines. As I have seen many officers drive without seat belts, I found this to be a double standard and an unethical means of revenue generation.

On Friday, May 22nd, I decided to stand on a street corner outside of the Ramsey County Law Enforcement Center with a camera to document officer seat belt use. This is the composition I captured that day.

Ramsey County Sheriff's Department bragging about arrest.
Ramsey County Sheriff’s Department bragging about arrest.

What an excellent video, from the very beginning Andrew is in prime form when he interacts with McNeil (780) and his partner in the white SUV, not only does he provide them with a CopBlock.org card (that he modified from the graphics page) but he totally shuts down the “are you going to harm the police station” line of questioning while not providing them with any information about his activities. Even the second officer, who seems to have a good relationship with Andrew, is another great example of how most CopBlockers don’t hate police (see this story about Texas CopBlockers working with Police to save a life).

It isn’t until the third interaction that Andrew is required to go into full CopBlock mode and when he does he doesn’t miss a beat. He asks the right questions like, “am I being detained right now” and “is that a lawful order?” While the officer continues his questions Andrew continues to answer them, yet, without actually providing much information to the police. This is pro level CopBlocking and is probably best done by folks who’ve filmed/interacted with police often. The other pro tip Andrew highlights here is the double camera angle which is not only good for malfunctions with gear but in this case where one device has a better view than another. This really rounds off the video and provides another layer of transparency.

On top of giving a great 101 on how to interact with police, Andrew also provides some video proof of the double standard within police. While they ticketed hundreds of motorist for failure to wear a seatbelt many officers are seen in this video not wearing theirs. Seat belt laws are one of the best examples of a victimless crime, because if a person CHOOSES to NOT wear their seat belt who could they possible harm, other than themselves? If you’re not free to make bad choices than how free are you?

Minnesota Police Public Sidewalk Private PropertyAlso, you’ll notice in the video that the last cop that approached and harassed Andrew about filming claims that he is on private property. As Andrew pointed out even before he started filming in the video, he is standing on a public sidewalk. As the name implies, public sidewalks are not private property, but in fact are public property. You can click the photo on the left to see where Andrew was standing from four different angles. The sidewalk he is standing on is pretty clearly not private property. This itself is an example of how the police often don’t know (or pretend not to) the very laws they are attempting to enforce. In this instance, the officer actually threatens to arrest Andrew for trespassing on private property, while he is obviously standing on public property.

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Ademo Freeman

was born and raised in Wisconsin, traveled the country in a RV dubbed “MARV” and is an advocate of a voluntary society, where force is replaced with voluntary interactions. He’s partaken in projects such as, Motorhome Diaries, Liberty on Tour, Free Keene, Free Talk Live and is the Founder of CopBlock.org.
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  • vegas jack

    Another lying, lawless pig with a badge. Is it any wonder why they have lost the publics trust and respect?

  • Common Sense

    “pro level CopBlocking” Does that mean there’s an amateur level? Like AA baseball? Is that a ranking? and stats?
    Its awesome, the way to fight tyranny isn’t by voting but by arguing over traffic laws. I would dare say that they would fall under the exemption.
    Perhaps you should write to the Attorneys General and get an opinion.

  • David

    Actually traffic laws are what made me despise cops.
    1. First ticket, senior year of college. As I came over a hill, I saw a sign dropping the speed limit 10 MPH with a cop waiting there to snag people – like me – who didn’t know about it. Ooooh, big cop got me speeding. You saved so many lives that day.
    2. Second ticket, senior year of college. Heading home from my girlfriend’s place about midnight. Residential area, four way stop. I came to a “near” stop, checked all directions, then kept going. Oooooh, big cop got me not coming to a complete stop. You saved so many lives that day.
    3. Third ticket, several years later. Come up to a four way stop where I see two cop cars parked in a lot, driver’s window to driver’s window. I signal, come to a complete stop behind the sign, pause a few seconds, then turn. Big cop gives me a ticket failure to stop. I point out that I saw him and his buddy. I did everything right. Cop tells me to tell it to the judge. Ooooh, big cop impressed his buddy by giving me a ticket for something I didn’t do. You saved so many lives that day.
    4. Fourth ticket, years later. Doing 62 MPH on I-40. My goodness, I was seven miles per hour over the posted limit. But speed kills and all that. Yesterday, I drove that same stretch of highway doing 75 MPH – in the right lane. Guys were blowing past me in the left lane doing 80+. Tell be big cop, if 62 MPH was so unsafe, why is it now safe to drive that same stretch of highway at 70 + MPH? Magic? Or is the whole “speed kills” thing a bunch of crap?
    Traffic laws are the point at which most people learn to despise police.

  • Shawn

    “Its awesome, the way to fight tyranny isn’t by voting but by arguing over traffic laws. ”

    Shows your lack of understanding. A vote is just one vote. But if you argue your position, convincing other, you one vote becomes thousands or even millions.
    That is the point of 1st Amendment. To discuss, argue, and maybe convince others. Because if you succeed, then you can change things.

  • JTF168

    They take pride in upholding the law for others, but don’t want to follow it themselves.

  • keepitreal

    LOLOLOLOLOLOL. You broke the law at least 3 times and yo cry about it. That’s fucking classic!

  • t

    CS:
    Not only an exception…..but his getting them right as they come up,to talk to him or as they are pulling out of their lot.

    Author due…..how many did you film with their seat lets on?

  • t

    So…..you don’t like the police because you enjoy endangering others without being held accountable.

    Ok then

  • whoopsydoodoo

    No, he contradicted a legal fiction containing no identifiable victim. Try to learn the difference

  • whoopsydoodoo

    No, he contradicted a legal fiction containing no identifiable victim. Try to learn the difference

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