SFPD "Videogate" Director Gets Suit Dismissed

By Jackson West
|  Monday, Mar 2, 2009  |  Updated 12:18 PM PDT
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SFPD "Videogate" Director Gets Suit Dismissed

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SFPD Officer Andrew Cohen's suit alleged Mayor Gavin Newsom, Police Chief Heather Fong kept him from editing his Web site registration in retaliation for posting a video that was deemed insensitive by city officials.

At issue was Cohen's domain registration, which revealed his home address. GoDaddy restricted Cohen's access to his account after the SFPD issued a letter of preservation.

Judge Susan Illston ruled that Cohen should have purchased a privacy policy in the first place, and dismissed the suit.

Cohen and his fellow officers at the Bay View Station recorded a series of sketches that featured jokes about the homeless, prostitution and cross-dressing among other attempts at humor.

"Videogate," as it was affectionately known by local news junkies with a taste for the absurd, wasn't really an issue until Newsom and Fong held a press conference, with Fong declaring the cinematic experiment as "an extremely dark day" in the SFPD's history.

As opposed to all the days of unsolved murders, instances of corruption and brutality in the force's long history. Not to mention "Fajitagate" just a few years previous.

That kind of news is just a bad hair day in comparison to amateur theatricals in poor taste.

Cohen is still a party to a suit accusing the city of discrimination because four Asian officers who participated in the film project were not disciplined. Photo by Bart Vis.

Jackson West admits he's made some embarrassingly bad movies himself in the past.

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