Public Photography is No Crime
It seems there has been a considerable amount of flack in recent months,
possibly more than any period from September 11, 2001 over shooting photographs
of public locations.
Both amateur and pro photographers are being hassled by security personnel,
police and yet the Coast Guard. An up side is that it's not illegal to
photograph in public places. In a statement by Bert Krages, an attorney that
specializes in photography court cases, "There's a general rule that if there's something in a public location, you're at liberty to photograph it." The rule relates to government buildings plus the police themselves, even if officers in law enforcement may not be aware of it. "The Patriot Act doesn't inhibit photography," says Krages, "and the Homeland Security Act doesn't either."
In a statement by Glenn Harlan Reynolds at
Popular Mechanics, cameras being present actually enhances security. Police reviewed their own camera footage while
seeking clues in the car bomb incident in Times Square, however they looked at movies and photos captured by tourists also. According to Krages, the best thing to do if stopped from photographing by a security officer or law enforcement officer is to remain very calm and polite and inquire as to the authority they possess to prevent you from photographing
on public property. If you are on publicly owned property, they do not have any authority. If they won't bend, stay polite and request to see a superior.