In March of 2017 private investigator Derrick Marshall and Citizens For Justice cameraman Matt Akins were confronted by Springfield Missouri Police Department Detective Matt Farmer while filming. Akins had been following Marshall as he investigated the public broadcast of private information by Springfield police officers. The investigation, which uncovered evidence that Social Security numbers were being read to the 911 call center over an unsecured dispatch channel available to anyone with a smart phone, led them to the Springfield Police Department General Headquarters.
As Akins was filming two officers walk across a parking lot, Marshall noticed a white truck that had been leaving the department suddenly reverse course and stop. A man in plain clothes promptly exited the truck and advanced towards the position Akins and Marshall held. The plain clothed man forced a truck that was attempting to pull into the department parking area to a stop, before crossing the driveway and approaching the vehicle Marshall and Akins were seated in.
The man never identified himself as an officer but demanded to know why the men were taking pictures. Akins responded by asking if they were being detained. The unidentified man responded that they weren’t but that he wanted to know why they were taking pictures. Akins asked if it was illegal or if they had a first amendment right to film. The unidentified man then walked to the rear of the vehicle and began writing down the license plate.
Akins proceeded to ask the man for identification 4 times before the man identified himself soley by a badge number. It was later determined that the man in question was SPD Detective Matthew Farmer.
Marshall eventually filed a complaint with the Springfield Police Department, Greene County Sherriff’s Office, and 911 Emergency Communications in relation to the investigation. The men encountered Detective Farmer again while serving our complaint on SPD