TV station settles privacy claim over videotaped police search
MINNESOTA– An Austin television station agreed in early November to settle claims prompted by its videotaping of police searches of the homes of three families.
The families sued KAAL-TV, a reporter, Freeborn County and the city of Albert Lea for invasion of privacy and trespass after the searches and arrests were filmed in March 1993. The television station claimed that it had been invited to ride along with the police and that there had been no objections to the presence of the cameras.
A $20,000 payment to two children who were present during the searches was approved in early November by the federal magistrate in St. Paul. A hearing on the rest of the settlement proposal, which would call for KAAL-TV and the city and county to jointly pay up to $86,000, is set for late November.
An attorney for the television station said the decision to settle was not based on the merits of the case but solely on economics. (Solland v. Freeborn County; Media Counsel: Gerald Bren, Minneapolis)