Guam – The Guam Police Department has issued the following news release regarding a confidential settlement reached with businessman James Adkins over the seizure by police of Adkins cell phone.
In the release, Police Chief Fred Bordallo states that “the Guam Police Department has learned important lessons from the case and as a result they have developed comprehensive, mandatory training policies to protect the First and Fourth Amendment constitutional rights of Guam residents.”
Under the terms of the settlement Chief Bordallo issued a General Order to all GPD personnel on December 26th with instructions on video recording and photographing.
The settlement follows a decision from the 9th Circuit last August rejecting GovGuam’s motion for dismissal concluding that Adkins had “adequately plead a violation of his First Amendment” right to freedom of speech and that he had also “pled adequately a violation of his Fourth Amendment” protection against un-reasonable search and seizure.
Adkins lawsuit stems from an incident on October 4th of 2009 when he was arrested after he used his cell phone to take photographs of a car accident in his Tamuning neighborhood.
He was arrested by Officers D.B. Anciano and Serafino Artui at a time when Suba was Chief of Police.
The 2 officers at the accident scene, Anciano and Arturi, told him to stop taking photographs, to get out of his car, and they demanded his cell phone.
When Adkins refused, his camera was seized and he was handcuffed, booked , fingerprinted, and photographed and finally released after being detained and imprisoned for about four hours.
READ the news release from GPD below: