Photographer had right to shoot accident scene, East Hartford police acknowledge – Journal Inquirer

By Kathleen G. McWilliams

EAST HARTFORD — The East Hartford Police Department has acknowledged that a Journal Inquirer photographer was within his rights to take photos at the scene of a fatal pedestrian accident in April.

On April 16, photographer James Michaud reported that he was told by two East Hartford officers to leave the scene of an accident that killed 8-year-old Carlos Hernandez and to stop taking pictures of the scene.

The Journal Inquirer subsequently filed a complaint with Police Chief Scott Samson and Mayor Marcia Leclerc.

Deputy Chief Robert Davis, in a letter dated June 30, said that Michaud was within his rights to observe and photograph the scene. The department reserves the right to tell observers to relocate, though police will not order bystanders to stop photographing or recording.

The department could not confirm that any officer had told Michaud to stop taking photos.

“We look forward to a great relationship with the Journal Inquirer,” Davis said.

Journal Inquirer Managing Editor Chris Powell said the newspaper anticipates a good relationship with the department as well.