Woman Fined Nearly $900 for Sharing a Snap of an Illegally Parked Police Car

A woman was fined for posting a photo of an illegally parked police car on Facebook. The cop car was in a spot reserved for disabled people. She was violating a gag law that makes it illegal to share "unauthorized" images of police officers.

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The law is called the Citizens Security Law, and it prohibits "the unauthorized use of images of police officers that might jeopardize their or their family's safety or that of protected facilities or police operations." It also limits posting other things like protests on social media. 

You'll be relieved to know that this is a Spanish law. It doesn't apply here! Not yet, anyway.

The incident occurred in southern Spain. The woman who posted the image captioned it, "Park wherever you bloody well please and you won't even get fined." (You can see the photo local news site Petreraldia.com.) Police say they needed the parking space to respond to a vandalism report. And they justified the fine, equal to nearly $900, saying the woman had harmed their honor. For real.

More from The Stir: Emotional Picture of Police Officer Comforting Toddler After Car Crash Goes Viral

So honor, safety, same thing, right? They're not even trying to pretend there's an actual security risk in posting photos of the police. It's about protecting their "honor." iQue tontería! (What a joke.)

Of course, this is just a silly nuisance compared with the real worry Spaniards have about the gag law. Think of all the images we've seen of protests and civil unrest and police brutality on social media the past few years. These images tell important stories. And cracking down on that kind of sharing seems like a gross violation of people's civil rights. 

Don't think it could happen here? Just last week a federal court struck down a gag law in Idaho prohibiting animal rights activists from filming incidents of abuse. But Kansas, Missouri, Utah, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, and North Carolina all still have similar anti-whistleblower laws. Maybe we should be worried.

 

Image via Ismagilov/Shutterstock

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