If I catch a customer on video in my bar stealing from someone can I post it on youtube? 14 Answers as of January 14, 2013

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Lawrence Lewis
Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
Yes. What is the goal?
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 1/14/2013
Law Office of Richard Williams
Law Office of Richard Williams | Richard Williams
The better plan would be to report it to the local law enforcement agency and let them handle it. There is no good reason that you may want to take such action as might expose you to a civil lawsuit even if you could eventually prevail.
Answer Applies to: Alabama
Replied: 1/9/2013
Michael Breczinski
Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
Yes it is not something that happened in private; but I would have you turn it over to the police instead.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 1/9/2013
Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
It would speak with an attorney first, but generally what you do in public is not done with an expectation of privacy and therefore can be published.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 1/8/2013
Baker Wyers Law, PLLC
Baker Wyers Law, PLLC | Clifton Baker
I wouldn't. Send it to the police.
Answer Applies to: Oklahoma
Replied: 1/4/2013
    Sebby Law Office
    Sebby Law Office | Jayne Sebby
    Only if you're willing to deal with the consequences. It would be wiser to show the video to the police and let them deal with it.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 1/4/2013
    Law Offices of Donald G. Sowers
    Law Offices of Donald G. Sowers | Donald G. Sowers
    You should hesitate to do such a thing. If you witnessed a theft, you should call your local police department. Make a report and give them a copy of the video. Let them advise you whether or not to try to locate the victim by posting it on Youtube, etc.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/4/2013
    Roe Law Firm
    Roe Law Firm | Theodore M. Roe
    There are several problems with doing this. First what is your motivation for doing this? If it is to punish sand humiliate the person on video, even if it is true this can subject you to a claim for intentional infliction of emotional distress. Also you could be subjected to claims for displaying the persons image without permission. You cannot use the persons image or likeness without permission. This is why you will see TV and film requiring releases from actors.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 1/4/2013
    Lawyer for Indie Media
    Lawyer for Indie Media | Sue Basko
    You absolutely may not post such a video. Illinois law also adds to this in a very big way. In Illinois, it is illegal to record audio of any conversation without prior permission of all parties to the conversation. If you recorded audio on the video, even without posting it, you may be charged with this very serious crime under the Illinois Eavesdropping Act. If you post the video, you are displaying evidence of your own crime, which is taken very seriously.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 1/3/2013
    Lawyer for Independent Media
    Lawyer for Independent Media | Sue Basko
    If you have a video that you think shows evidence of a crime, you should take the video to the police and report the crime. If you post the video onto youtube, you may be committing defamation per se, because you do not know for an absolute fact that the person was stealing. You also may be violating eavesdropping or privacy laws, as well as endangering and harassing the person that you are accusing of theft. Generally speaking, you cannot post a video of anyone without their written permission. If you post such a video, you are also violating the Youtube Terms of Service. In short, if you post such a video, you are probably committing crimes and opening yourself to being sued. If injury comes to the person shown in the video, you will be held responsible.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/3/2013
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    You are not asking a criminal law question. This is a question sounding in tort law. The answer to your question is you would be inviting a law suit. The tort is called "invasion of privacy." Posting such a video might also constitute slander if it depicts the person in a negative light. You could take your chances and assume the person won't do anything but you are taking a big risk. I suggest you turn the tape over to the police and let the Justice system take care of the thief.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 1/4/2013
    Rizio & Nelson
    Rizio & Nelson | John W. Bussman
    Sure, as long as you aren't using a hidden camera to film people in an area where they have an expectation of privacy (e.g. in a bathroom). Be careful, though. You could be sued for defamation. Even if you win the lawsuit (because you haven't done anything wrong and this scum bag actually is a thief), you're still out the cost of an attorney, plus the wasted time and stress. Good luck!
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/4/2013
    Zales Law Office
    Zales Law Office | Nicholas C Zales
    Go ahead. It was not taken in a public place and the person is a thief.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 1/4/2013
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