On May 10, San Francisco police officers carrying a sledge hammer, and with their guns drawn, raided the home of a journalist named Bryan Carmody. They handcuffed him for six hours and seized tens of thousands of dollars of his equipment along with his confidential work material. They had one goal: to learn who had leaked a police report to him about the death of longtime San Francisco public defender Jeffrey Adachi.

Carmody had refused weeks earlier to reveal his source to the police department’s internal affairs division. Because he had promised the source confidentiality, he was ethically bound to keep that pledge. Journalists protect their sources with virtually no exceptions, even if it means going to prison.

San Francisco police seize equipment of freelance journalist who refused to identify a source