Tempe officer suspended for seizing man's cellphones

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) - A Tempe police officer has been suspended for a day without pay for seizing cellphones from a man who was recording an encounter with the officer.

Officer Lara Camberg stopped Anderson Jean-Louis Feb. 13 because of loud music and she said she seized his cellphones after she shoved one in her face and then began to record her with a second phone. She said his actions threatened her safety by blocking her view.

Jean-Louis filed a complaint. Its allegations included excessive force and a violation of his First Amendment rights.

However, a police official said Camberg acted properly except for seizing the cellphones.

Cmdr. Noah Johnson said he didn't see an officer-safety reason to seize the phones and that officers have been told about the public's rights to videotape them.