U.S. Press Freedom Tracker

Freelance photojournalist arrested by police while filming aftermath of car crash

Incident Details

Date of Incident
July 24, 2017
Hemet, California
John Strangis

Arrest/Criminal Charge

Status of Charges
Unnecessary use of force?
July 24, 2017

John Strangis, a freelance videographer and photojournalist, was arrested while filming the scene of a car crash in Hemet, CA, on July 24, 2017.

According to Riverside County News Source, Strangis responded to the location of the three-vehicle crash to film footage that he intended to sell to news organizations.

Although the scene had not been established or indicated to be a crime scene, Strangis was ordered several times to stop filming by City of Hemet police officers to move further away from the scene.

When he did not comply and remained filming, he was handcuffed and arrested on suspicion of resisting, delaying or obstructing a public officer and given a citation to appear in court, according to the Press-Enterprise.

Strangis and the Hemet Police Department did not respond to requests by the Freedom of the Press Foundation for comment.

The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker catalogues press freedom violations in the United States. Email tips to [email protected]