POLICE ROB AND KILL

WHITEWB at JCCW22.CC.SUNYJCC.EDU WHITEWB at JCCW22.CC.SUNYJCC.EDU
Wed Jul 7 06:59:12 MDT 1999


From:   NAME: Bill White
        FUNC: HUMANITIES
        TEL: 326/371                          <WHITE, BILL AT A1 AT JCCV03>
To:     IN%"rushtalk at athena.csdco.com"@MRGATE at JCCW22


>POLICE ROB AND KILL

>Forced Altruism List 7/5/99
>Reposting permitted in complete form with the contact information at the end
>intact.

>This is important enough for me to violate the "no forwarding" procedure on
>this List. If it angers some List members, I apologize.<

                I like that you have included commentary as well as a short, but
        relevant article.

>This came from  Keith Nobles keithnobles at earthlink.net, moderator of the
>"Keith's Forum Against The Man" List. Contact him if you're interested in
>subscribing. This story is an excellent example of why we need to completely
>DO AWAY WITH RICO LAWS. They are an abomination and are unconstitutional if
>anyone would take the time and effort (and the money) to challenge them in
>an honest court (rather than one of the courts where judges rule based on
>current liberal ideas). The day has come when you wonder whether that red
>light in your mirror means you're going to get a ticket or be robbed. When
>the police become bandits, we're lost. When they "target" someone's property
>and even have it APPRAISED before the raid. they can no longer be called
>police, but bandits with badges.

                Well noted, Ray.  The whole system of fines and property
        seizures needs to be rethought.  To allow government bureaucracies
        to profit from these "legalized" heists is an affront to freedom,
        decency and justice.  Criminal activity becomes a cash cow to the
        justice system and local community units, like towns or counties.
        If "suspected" perpetrators have cash-convertable property or jingle
        in their pockets, they can become real or invented targets of the
        justice bureaucracy.  The temptation rip off selected people is great
        because it fills the "coffers."

>REIN IN POLICE RAIDS FOR PROFIT

>The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, p. E-6
>July 4, 1999 Lead Editorial

>On Oct. 22, 1992, 61-year-old Donald Scott was shot dead in his own home by
>a sheriff's deputy serving an early-morning search warrant on Scott's ranch
>in Ventura County, Calif. No drugs were found, and the local district
>attorney later determined that the search warrant had been obtained by using
>false evidence.

>       So why was the raid undertaken?

>>The district attorney's investigation determined that the deadly raid "was
>motivated, at least in part, by a desire to seize and forfeit the ranch for
>the government." Before the raid occurred, deputies had gone so far as to
>get an appraisal of the $5 million ranch, which they hoped to confiscate for
>their department's profit.

                This is a disturbing sequence.


>"We find no reason why law enforcement officers who were investigating
>suspected narcotics violations would have had any interest in the value of
>the ranch," the report noted.

>Since the early '80s, when federal property-confiscation laws were relaxed,
>local, state and federal law enforcement officials have seized billions of
>dollars of private property from those whom they merely suspected of a
>crime. Most of the owners of confiscated property were never found guilty of
>anything. In fact, in 80 percent of confiscation cases, no criminal charges
>were even filed.

                This is really excessive.

>Under the law, passed during the first Reagan administration as part of the
>war on drugs, police agencies were empowered to seize property that they
>suspected was either used in crime or had been purchased with illegal
>profits. If they had "probable cause" to suspect the property was tainted --
>essentially the standard needed to get a search warrant -- they could seize
>the property.

                Is this property ever returned or is it converted to
        cash for the agencies?


>Furthermore, the law allowed police agencies to keep or sell whatever they
>confiscated. In essence, it put a dangerous profit motive into law
>enforcement, and agencies began behaving just as you would expect with such
>a carrot dangling in front of their noses.

                Misplaced entrepreneurship, I'd say.

>In Volusia County, Fla., for example, sheriff's deputies began making random
>stops on I-95, confiscating cash in quantities of more than $100. They
>argued they had "probable cause" to believe that anybody carrying more than
>that amount of cash was engaging in drug trafficking. An investigation by
>the Orlando Sentinel discovered that 90 percent of motorists targeted for
>confiscation were black or Latino.

>Last month, the U.S. House of Representatives finally voted to reform the
>law that created such outrages. The bill, sponsored by U.S. Rep. Henry Hyde
>(R-Ill.) was backed by congressmen and lobby groups from across the
>political spectrum, and passed overwhelmingly, 375-48.

>The Clinton Administration opposes the bill, as do many law-enforcement
>groups. U.S. Rep. Jim Ramstad (R-Minn.), who voted against the measure,
>expressed the sentiment of the administration and many of those groups when
>he warned that changing the confiscation law could devastate the budgets of
>local law enforcement agencies. [It would cost them millions of dollars in
>stolen money and billions in stolen property. -RT]

                Local agencies should not make their prosperity dependent upon
        profits that come from prosecuting criminals or arresting.

>If true, Ramstad's warning is all the more reason to reform the law. IF
>CONFISCATIONS ARE OCCURRING ON SUCH A SCALE AS TO BE A PRIME SOURCE OF
>FUNDING FOR LOCAL POLICE, THIS THING HAS GOTTEN WAY OUT OF HAND. [Emphasis
>mine. -RT]

                amen

                Bill White



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