Local Youtuber files lawsuit against Artesia Police Department

New Mexico News

ARTESIA, N.M. (KRQE) – A self-proclaimed YouTuber is suing the police. He was charged with concealing his identity after recording an interaction with Artesia Police in 2018. He has now been acquitted and is fighting back legally.

“The case implicates some of the most basic rights of the state and federal constitution,” said Bustillos Attorney Adam Flores.

Albert Bustillos runs the Stray Dog The Exposer Youtube channel and was charged and arrested while filming the Navajo Oil Refinery in Artesia for failure to identify himself to police officers. Bustillos was initially found guilty of the charge but took it to the Appeals Court. The conviction was overturned and Bustillos was acquitted of all charges.

Bustillos has also filed a civil suit against the Artesia Police Department for violating his civil rights. He also filed a lawsuit against the Carlsbad Police for a separate incident when Bustillos failed to identify himself to authorities.

Bustillos and his lawyers feel there needs to be more training within the departments in southeast New Mexico because this is becoming all too common. “It was a shock because Mr.Bustillos knew the law, it was shocking to us that these officers, this officer didn’t have any idea what the law was when it comes to encounters with people who are recording,” said Flores.

Bustillos and his attorneys are seeking to be awarded damages, attorney’s fees and court costs.

KRQE News 13 reached out to the city of Carlsbad and Artesia police departments for comment about the lawsuits, both declined.

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