Delaware County sergeant suspected device could be gun
Thursday, July 29, 2010 09:50 PM
When a deputy sheriff began questioning Melissa Greenfield's boyfriend at a Delaware County truck stop, she began recording video with her cell phone.
By Randy Ludlow
She never thought that she, or her phone, could be viewed as a danger while she documented the activities of public employees in a public place.
"I'm a 115-pound, 20-year-old girl wearing a cervical collar with nothing but a cell phone. I was not going to harm any officer," Greenfield said today.
However, a sheriff's sergeant saw the situation differently after Greenfield announced she was recording video "for legal purposes and our own safety."
Sgt. Jonathan Burke wrote that he repeatedly ordered Greenfield to place the "unknown" object in her pocket and keep her hands free. When Greenfield refused, she was arrested and charged with obstructing official business and resisting arrest.
Burke wrote in his report that he feared that Greenfield could have been holding a dangerous object such as a "cell-phone gun."
Burke ultimately determined that Greenfield's cell phone was not the exotic stuff of James Bond but a simple T-Mobile device.
In a statement, Delaware County Sheriff Walter L. Davis III said that cell-phone guns are an example of everyday items that have been altered into deceptive weapons that endanger the safety of officers and the public.
"When a sheriff's deputy encounters an individual holding something in his or her hand, the deputy will take action to identify the item. This is done for the safety of the deputy, the involved parties and the public," Davis wrote.
After Greenfield got her phone back, she said the video she took of the deputies at the Flying J truck stop at I-71 and Rt. 37 on July 9 had been deleted, along with a couple of vacation videos.
Deputies did not delete any video, Davis said. A warrant would have been required to search the phone, and one was not obtained, he said...