Officers tell driver it’s against the law to record the police. No it’s not.


A Wilmington, North Carolina police sergeant is shown on video telling a citizen (who was pulled over for a traffic stop) that he is not allowed to record the police due to a “new state law” prohibiting the recording of police interactions.

Shortly after that, a New Hanover County Sheriff’s deputy agrees with the officer that there is a new state law. There is no such law in North Carolina.  Click her for a link to the story and the video.

The video comes from defense attorney Jesse Bright, who also drives for Uber in his spare time. Bright said he was making a round trip for a customer in late February and was stopped shortly after the passenger got back into the vehicle.

The passenger was asked to exit the vehicle and submit to a search. The location where Bright stopped was described as a “drug house” by an officer heard on the video.

When Bright kept recording the interaction, an unidentified officer with the Wilmington Police Department, confronted him and told him to stop recording.

New Hanover County Sheriff Ed McMahon and Wilmington Police Chief issued statements after this story became public stating that the officers were wrong when they told Jesse Bright he could not record them while they were on duty.

If you are pulled over by the police or encounter the police in some other situation there is no law the prohibits you from recording the interaction.  If you are charged with a crime in Wake County, North Carolina contact The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel, PLLC to discuss your case.  Many patrol cars have dashboard video cameras that record what happens in the front of the car and everything that you say when/if you are placed inside of the patrol car.  You can reach us at our Cary, NC office at 919-585-1486 to discuss your case.


Wiley Nickel

Wiley Nickel lives and works in Cary, North Carolina. In 1998, he graduated from Tulane University with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. After college Wiley went to work for Al Gore and travelled with the Vice President as part of his national advance staff. Following the Gore campaign he earned his law degree from the Pepperdine University School of Law in 2005. While in law school Wiley worked as a law clerk in the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office where he gained valuable criminal trial experience before taking and passing the California bar exam. His first job out of law school was for the Merced County District Attorney’s Office where he worked as a Deputy District Attorney with a focus on prosecuting DWI offenders. Wiley later joined the Law Offices of Joseph Uremovic where he focused on civil litigation and family law. When the opportunity came to join the Obama campaign in 2008 Wiley jumped at the chance. He spent three years travelling with President Obama as a member of his national advance team. In 2011 Wiley left his work for the White House to return to the practice of law. Wiley devotes the majority of his practice to the areas of criminal law, family law, traffic tickets and DMV issues. The Law Offices of Wiley Nickel was started with the goal of providing the best representation possible for all of his clients. Experienced, Compassionate, Aggressive Criminal Defense While defense attorney Wiley Nickel works as the primary attorney for all of his cases, he does have an associate attorney, a team of investigators, forensic consultants, and support staff to call on to help achieve the best possible result in every case. He limits his case load so that he can focus on providing the best possible legal defense to all of his clients. Every case is a top priority and the goal is to have your case dismissed with a focus on being able to expunge your charges at the end of the process. When he is not working, Wiley is an avid family man, distance runner and golfer. He loves North Carolina college sports and is hoping this is the year for Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers. Wiley is licensed to practice law in North Carolina and California.