March 3, 2012
A Cook County judge today ruled the state’s controversial eavesdropping law unconstitutional.
The law makes it a felony offense to make audio recordings of police officers without their consent even when they’re performing their public duties.
Judge Stanley Sacks, who is assigned to the Criminal Courts Building, found the eavesdropping law unconstitutional because it potentially criminalizes “wholly innocent conduct.”
The decision came in the case of Christopher Drew, an artist who was arrested in December 2009 for selling art on a Loop street without a permit. Drew was charged with a felony violation of the eavesdropping law after he used an audio recorder in his pocket to capture his conversations with police during his arrest.