Wednesday, February 9, 2005

Radio station owner making waves

Local radio station owner Ed Perry is suing the former owners of the Hanover Mall, claiming his civil rights were violated when he was arrested at the complex in Sept. 2002 while covering a potential breaking news story... Perry claims a Hanover Mall security officer and local police officer wrongfully arrested him while he tried to get details concerning a reported car-jacking at the complex on Sept. 9, 2002... "My purpose for being there was to report on an incident that had potential for impacting public safety," said Perry, who owns WATD 95.9 FM in Marshfield. "That is what we (reporters) are supposed to do. When a business tries to prevent that from being done by a threat of arrest, that is a violation of a public trust."... Perry said he tried to interview witnesses to the car-jacking, but was prevented from doing so by mall security officer David Tharp and Hanover police officer Stephen Moar... "The mall officer said to me I was trespassing and to get off the property," said Perry. "I then said I'd like you to tell me that for the record on my tape."... Perry said Tharp balked at making a statement... "He said I don't want my voice recorded and he then felt I recorded him illegally," said Perry. "The police officer (Moar) then mentioned to him what I did was illegal."... Perry said Tharp then grabbed his tape recorder and a small scuffle ensued between them. Moar arrested Perry seconds later, charging him with disorderly conduct, resisting arrest, and trespassing. All of these charges were eventually dismissed by court officials...

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