Old May 5, 18, 12:29 pm
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 929
Originally Posted by petaluma1 View Post
But you must demand it, and ask for a litigation hold before CCTV coverage of the assault is erased!
IANAL (I just beat them in court) & TINLA.

But to be more precise — speaking as someone who has gotten litigation holds, CCTV video, and even an evidence preservation order in federal appellate court based on TSA's spoliation of video — you must:
  1. Contact both TSA and the airport authority, preferably in the same email;
  2. requesting the CCTV under FOIA, Privacy Act, and applicable state FOI law;
  3. explicitly stating that you are contemplating litigation for the events depicted, and that the CCTV is evidence you expect will be relevant to that litigation;
  4. explicitly requesting every angle of all parts in which you are visible at all, noting that they are required to have the following angles on CCTV and pointing out which ones are likely relevant:
      • Wide angle view of the entire se entine queuing area to view all passengers waiting on line.
      • Full body and facial view of Ticket Checker carrying out their duties
      • Passenger's face
      • Passenger's carry on items being placed in X-Ray machine
      • Entire input belt
      • TSA employee at X-ray monitor
      • Entire walk-thru detector including side-lights
      • Full height view of passenger walking through the metal detector
      • Clear view of passenger's face for identification purposes
      • Entire length of X-ray output roller bed
      • Full facial view of passenger and full torso view of passenger (torso/arms/hands) to monitor the passenger's collection of property/baggage from the roller bed
      • Wide-angle view to show the passenger deparure from the output roller bed area (and entering or bypassing the wanding station)
      • Full body and facial view of passenger entering the wanding station
      • View of all search tables
      • Facial view and upper torso view of screener conducting physical inspection at search tables and replacing passenger property in baggage
  5. giving a reasonable description of yourself, identifying checkpoint, and the approximate time span;
  6. explicitly demanding that they preserve the records;
  7. explicitly demanding that they confirm that they will in fact preserve the records, and following up on that every few days until they respond;
  8. specifying the format(s) in which you want the video (note that many CCTV systems are a proprietary Windows-only video format from the CCTV vendor, but can export to e.g. mp4);
  9. (well) before 30 days after the event (which is when they routinely destroy).
Do all of that, ASAP. It should only take one email, but it has to be absolutely explicit. No mincing words in an effort to be polite. Not requesting, but demanding as is your legal right.

Note that you must contact the airport authority & TSA FOIA ([email protected]) directly. An STSO is not sufficient.

Also, to get a litigation hold, you must genuinely be contemplating litigation. You don't have to actually file suit, but you have to be seriously thinking about it.

If the airport authority (cough BOS cough) refuses to confirm or deny the existence of the video, require them to agree that they will preserve the video anyway, if it exists, with the details above. It can take significant pestering.

On the other hand, other airport authorities (e.g. SFO) are much more responsive and might even get you the video within about a month, as (typically) required by law. (Yes, governments obeying FOI laws is the exception, not the rule.)

Get their response in writing for the record, but phone can help to follow up and make sure they respond.

And if you want, contact me, give me a Privacy Act waiver, and I'll demand it for you.

Last edited by saizai; May 5, 18 at 12:38 pm
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