Almost two months after they arrested him on wiretappping charges, then admitted they were following false legal guidelines, North Port police returned Steve Horrigan’s camera.

Not only did they not delete his footage, he didn’t even need a lawyer to get it returned.

Horrigan filed a motion on Thursday and the phone was returned to him this morning.

From his motion:

The Government of the City of North Port has violated my right to be free from prior restraint by preventing me from publishing a video clip that is contained on the smartphone by illegally seizing and concealing the recording device and media without warrant, thereby restraining my ability to publish material protected by the freedom of the press, freedom of assembly and freedom of speech. The Defendant operates a web-site newsgathering “blog” and is dues paying member of the National Press Photographers Association. While the Defendant believes that members of a professional press have no greater rights under the First Amendment, this Defendant enjoys no less right. Nixon v. Warner Communications, Inc., 435 U. S. 589 (1978) 

I’m in the midde of a journalism conference, so I didn’t have time to watch the entire video in depth, but I did see the final minute where he was arrested and he is being very professional, providing his name and date-of-birth, but also asserting his right not to have to divulge his address.

Horrigan raised the following questions in an email when he sent me the video.

I posted the video in raw format, just the way it came off my android. I don’t want to be accused of editing or anything.

1)      Here are some things that readers should look for

a)      Count how many times he tells me to stop video taping

b)      Count how many times he tells me to leave the area

c)       Count how many times he mentions the word “audio”

d)      Count how many times I get to within 10-15 feet of them (not counting the times they walked up to me)

e)      Count how many times he gives me permission to videotape. Important because you need two party consent in FL, so he gave it to me.

f)       See when they got the two Roberts bros out of the car to ck for weapons since they were so dangerous.I’ll give you a hint: never. 

g)      Count how many times he asks me to identify myself after I give him my name. (This is for all the Stop and Frisk geeks)

h)   and count how many times he said, if you leave now, I won’t arrest you after I asked for a lawyer.