Federal Court Ruling Strikes Portion of Texas Law Restricting Drone Photography

Graves Dougherty attorney Jim Hemphill is among the legal team that successfully represented plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging a Texas statute that restricts use of drone photography. In a San Antonio Express-News article, Hemphill commented “Judge Pitman entered an opinion that carefully considers every issue, exhaustively reviews precedent, and holds decisively that drone photography is fully protected by the First Amendment as an integral tool in 21st century journalism.”  Graves Dougherty joined a team representing the National Press Photographers Association (NPPA), the Texas Press Association, and photographer Joseph Pappalardo.  Co-counsel included lawyers from the NPPA, Public Justice, and the Media Freedom and Information Access Clinic at Yale Law School.

Additional background on the case and the significance of the ruling has been covered in numerous articles, some of which are included via the links below.

San Antonio Express-News: Texas drone law restricted San Antonio-area journalists, photographers from doing jobs, judge rules

Texas Standard: Strict Texas drone use law overturned

Texas Agriculture Law Blog: Federal Court Strikes Down Texas Drone Law