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L.A. Cops Slam Paparazzi Proposal

Britney Spears gets into a waiting SUV as she is mobbed by paparazzi at a Studio City mall Jan. 14, 2008. The pop star had just finished eating lunch after arriving an aborted trip to a court hearing in Los Angeles related to her custody battle with ex-husband Kevin Federline that day.
KCAL
The Los Angeles Police Department is recommending that the City Council scrap a proposal to create a new law limiting activities of paparazzi around celebrities.

Cmdr. Kirk Albanese told the city Police Commission on Tuesday that enough laws are in place to restrict photographers if their behavior around celebrities creates a safety problem, and the proposed law would be unfair and hard to enforce.

Among the proposals is creation of so-called personal safety zones around celebrities.

The civilian Police Commission voted to approve the recommendation and forward it to the City Council.


Photos: Stand-off At Britney's
News of the L.A.P.D.'s recommendation comes just days after a coroner's jury ruled that paparazzi contributed to the death of Princess Diana and her boyfriend Dodi Fayed by sparking a car chase around Paris.

Princess Diana - The Paparazzi Photos
Police in Los Angeles started turning up the heat on paparazzi there in February.

Sheriff's deputies arrested four photographers in two separate incidents as they waited for Britney Spears at a salon and Lindsay Lohan outside a club.

"The paparazzi have grown in numbers. ... Six months ago, you would have 10 to 15 to 20 that would obey the rules. Now, you have 50 to 100 that don't obey the rules," L.A. sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore told CBS News correspondent Sandra Hughes.

Whitmore insists the public is now asking for the help of authorities to stop the madness, saying, "Basically, what were getting are calls of complaints, people that have to swerve their vehicles, people that are out for a simple walk with their dog that can't navigate the sidewalk because there's 50-60 people, they have cameras. They're moving about, they're jostling."

"We do know," Whitmore observes, "that this kind of situation has ended in tragic results. We certainly don't want that. ... If they obey the law, it won't get any worse."