Civil Liberties

Uber Driver and Activist Arrested in New Hampshire For Videotaping a Bar Bouncer Yelling at Him for Being an Uber Driver

Cops came to his door to nab the activist while he was out buying baby food for his child, due any minute.


Christopher David (who was a character in my 2012 book about the Ron Paul movement, Ron Paul's Revolution, for his earlier efforts as a Ron Paul revolution activist) was arrested today in New Hampshire for a very vital public safety reason: a bouncer mad at him for being an Uber driver (in a city where the government so far has not been satisfied with Uber living up to its legal requirements) turned him into the cops for apparent violation of what, as written, is a pretty terribly restrictive law barring by my read of the law any audio taping under any circumstances without explicit consent from all involved.

Another New Hampshire libertarian activist, Free State Project leader Carla Gericke, beat a similar rap under those same laws because the person she was taping was a cop; it's possible a court might decide the First Amendment rights to film a government employee doing his work that they upheld for Gericke might not apply to a busybody bouncer.

Christopher David mugshot, from his Facebook

Context from the Voices of Liberty website, including the gut punch that this dick move could have made him miss the birth of his child:

Dover, New Hampshire police came to the home of Uber driver Christopher David to arrest him today. His partner was at home, pregnant with their son, who could arrive at any moment. David was out buying baby food. The arrest could very well prevent him from witnessing the birth of his son. The charge? Class B felony wiretapping, for recording a bouncer in public who was attempting to bully David into stopping his work as an Uber driver.

New Hampshire, under pressure from several taxi companies, recently banned Uber from operating in the city, threatening to fine and arrest any drivers who continued to operate. The first citation was issued to Stephanie Franz, a 63-year-old grandmother and school bus driver. Christopher David started the Free Ubercampaign to protest the ban.

On one occasion, David was giving rides in Portsmouth to bar patrons seeking a safe ride home when he was confronted by a bouncer employed by Daniel Street Tavern. The bouncer attempted to bully David into ceasing his work, who in turn recorded the incident.

It's important to note here that David was in his own vehicle at the time, and both parties were on a public street with no expectation of privacy. Nevertheless, the bouncer called the police and decided to press charges of a class B felony for wiretapping, resulting in a warrant being issued for David's arrest, which Dover police served at his residence…. David has decided to turn himself in, and hopes to be out on bail in time to witness his son's birth.

More details today from Seacoastonline:


David was released on $5,000 personal recognizance bail. He said he was also scheduled to be arraigned Jan. 4 at the Portsmouth Circuit Court….

David said in a Portsmouth Herald interview that he's continuing to operate as an Uber driver in Portsmouth, without adhering to the city's new ordinance, as "an act of civil disobedience." Also a web developer, he's been spreading the word about his protest through Facebook, the website and by posting fliers on utility poles throughout the city…