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6/21/2017 8:25:40 PM
Posted: 3/19/2001 12:39:42 PM EDT
If these cops have become so reliant upon asset forfeitures that they need to file a lawsuit to stop the will of the civilians, it should make you wonder if they have crossed the line and created a legalized theft ring. http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v01.n456.a08.html UTAH LAW OFFICERS FILE SUIT OVER SEIZURE INITIATIVE Lawsuit Seeks To Stop New Law From Taking Effect SALT LAKE CITY -- Law enforcement officers couldn't win before Utah voters so now they hope a federal judge will strike down Initiative B, a Utahns for Property Protection spokesman said Tuesday. "I'm not surprised law enforcement is trying to stop Initiative B in the court. They were frustrated when nearly 70 percent of the voters said they wanted their property rights protected. They couldn't win it on the ballot, so now they want the court to stop it," said attorney Andrew Stavros. Lt. Wayne Tarwater of the Weber- Morgan Narcotics Strike Force joined officers from Garfield, Iron, Salt Lake and Utah counties and from Sandy and West Valley City in filing the lawsuit Tuesday. They asked federal Judge Dee Benson to prevent Initiative B, the Utah Property Protection Act, from becoming effective March 20 while they seek to overturn it. Initiative B would resolve a number of abuses in seizure cases where law enforcement officers sell seized property through forfeiture procedures, according to a legislative audit. It would add more accountability to the process and halt the forfeiture sale of property seized from people who eventually are found to be innocent. Because the new law says all proceeds in state criminal forfeiture cases must help fund public education, officers claim that conflicts with federal laws covering cases when federal and local lawmen cooperate and then share proceeds from forfeited property, primarily in drug investigations. Federal law says forfeiture revenues shared with local agencies must be used for law enforcement purposes. The plaintiffs said that shared money cannot go into the Uniform School Fund, so that would force them to violate the new law. "The scope of this lawsuit is very narrow," Stavros said. "It involves only a tiny, tiny portion of Initiative B that affects federal law. Even if the judge strikes down that portion, 99 percent of it will still be good law. And they could always turn back the federal money." In addition, Stavros said, the Utah Attorney General's office reviewed Initiative B before it was placed on the ballot and found it to be constitutional. "The plaintiffs aren't concerned about people's rights, they just don't want to give up the money they get from selling the property of innocent owners," he said. In 1999, Utah police and Sheriff's deputies shared slightly more than $700,000 in forfeiture cases.
Link Posted: 3/19/2001 4:37:08 PM EDT
Some of that is a good idea- nobody should have their property taken and sold off unless they are convicted of a crime. However, the stuff about proceeds from drug seizures going towards education is misguided. There's nothing wrong with using the money seized from a meth cook to fund a drug team, as long as they guy was convicted and there is oversight on how the money is spent. And it will seriously decrease the amount of seizure money departments get- federal law requires all 'equitable sharing' money be used only for law enforcement. If a state has a law to the contrary, the feds just won't give them any money. Then, the schools don't get it, the drug team doesn't get it. The taxpayers end up having to shell out more money for both schools and drug teams. No forfeiture without conviction is a good idea, but you have to be careful how you implement it.
Link Posted: 3/19/2001 5:28:01 PM EDT
Sparky: The Utah measure tries to remove the incentive for cops to seize stuff for the profits. If they know that by seizing the Lexus they can get that cool PSG1 rifle the tac team "needs" there is a bit more incentive than if they know that a school gets another computer. There have been a few too many cases of cops seizing stuff first and asking questions later. (This is NOT a slam at cops. They work too hard for too little money and appreciation. But there are some bad apples or weak apples or mis-guided individuals in any group. Our Founding Fathers tried to deal with the natural tendency of governments to grab more and more power.) If the federal law requires the money to go to the cops, there are 2 solutions. The Utah law should provide that the federal money goes to the cops but their state (or local) appropriation is reduced by the same amount and the money is transfered to the schools. Then Sparky's arguement about losing money goes out the window. Even better is to fight to change the federal law. The explosion in forfiture laws has been one of the worst decisions for American justice. It has perverted the incentive system for the police. Hats off to Utah for taking a stand to reverse this pernicious policy. Frances
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 12:38:34 AM EDT
This forfeiture stuff is getting out of hand. But isn't it true that the money goes to the city? I thought the cities were big on it, not the LEOs.
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 3:26:39 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/20/2001 6:28:50 AM EDT by LAcop]
I was an undercover narc for several years before returning to uniform patrol. First, the cops dont get shit !!! The cities, counties, etc. get the money. Some of this money may go back into the department for the purchase of equipment, training, etc. Don't make it sound like the cops are getting rich by selling people's property. Second, usually if property is seized prior to someone being found guilty, it is because they signed it over to the investigating agency. Third, just remember, Because people win in court, doesnt prove they are innocent. It takes alot of proof, probable cause and so forth to get a case to that point in the first place. But hey, thats what makes our system so great, a dirt-bag attorney can get anyone off on some bullshit excuse. IF YOU WANTA PLAY-YOU MUST PAY. It cannot be any other way if you really want to fight and reduce crime. Oh yeah, I forgot...Prisons are full of innocent people.[;D] Pat
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 5:10:25 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/20/2001 5:25:17 AM EDT by Cible]
Originally Posted By Sparky315: Some of that is a good idea . . . [h]owever, the stuff about proceeds from drug seizures going towards education is misguided. There's nothing wrong with using the money seized from a meth cook to fund a drug team, as long as they guy was convicted and there is oversight on how the money is spent.
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Actually, Sparky, it gives the departments the wrong incentive. That's why we allow lawyers here in the U.S. to work on a contingency basis for civil cases, but not criminal cases. It is arguable that the criminals need the help the most, but it provides the wrong incentive. Both lawyers AND asshole pig-fucking fascists like "fifi LA cop" are only supposed to seek the truth, not money. Especially when the jack-booted thug drops his crystal ball and has to rely on his merely human abilities, which means that an innocent person might actually get wrongly charged. I've heard it happened once or twice.
And it will seriously decrease the amount of seizure money departments get- federal law requires all 'equitable sharing' money be used only for law enforcement.
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Then we need to change _that_ law. Overall, I think that this illustrates the us vs. them mentality that comes along with the stratification of wealth and militarization of law enforcement.
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 5:25:15 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 5:42:22 AM EDT
Of course it sounds right. Your friend took his chances by playing the game; of course, "the game" in the situation you describe was driving through Sheriff Buford T. Justice's jurisdiction. I'm sure your friend was guilty of _something_ though. Hey, that's the way it works. I'm sure the world is full of "innocent people." A majority of people arrested are convicted. That means that anybody arrested is probably guilty. Since forfieture is a civil process, the burden of proof is "more probable than not," or just over 50%. Accordingly, if you are arrested, they should be able to forfiet your stuff. Isn't that right Fifi LA cop?
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 5:56:54 AM EDT
Garand Shooter, you make some thought provoking opinions in your post. I will not get into what I think about the guy who posted before you. But I will say that the "jack booted thug Police like me", go out everday and try to make things safer and better for all of us. Yes, I know there are "Bad-apples" in Law Enforcement, but that is not the majority. I, nor any other cop I know has ever profited a dime from seizing one's property. Yes, the agencies or counties, etc. may have, but I dont think you will find many cops who are in favor of making money for the counties, cities, etc., when we have to fight, bitch, and raise hell to get a minimal raise every few years anyway. The main reason cops want to be able to seize properties from DRUG-DEALERS, is to attempt to hit them where it hurts. If you haven't noticed our court's way of punishing convicted people isn't exactly working. We all know that the majority of crime is committed by repeaters anyway. Why ? Because too many times they are given nothing more than a slap on the wrist. As for your friend, I cant say how the system works there, nor do I know all the facts of the case. I will say that in our neck of the country, an officer has to show alot more cause than just having a large sum of money, etc. You have to be able to tie in other facts that point to drug money. Pat
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 5:58:28 AM EDT
LA Cop said: Oh yeah, I forgot...Prisons are full of innocent people
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Well, they are. Maybe when the Columbians invade the SouthWest, our government will question the stupidity of our drug policy.
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 6:46:31 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 6:53:53 AM EDT
Magic: In my experience, the people in prison don't get there quick enough. Before I went on the road, I worked Corrections at the county level for 8 years. My observations about people bound for State Prison are this: They start their criminal careers as juveniles. They get put on PINS (Person in Need of Supervision), essentially a juvenile form of probation. If they are bad enough, they might get sent to a juvenile secure facility, but a lot of them don't. That part of their criminal career gets sealed when they are older because they were poor "misguided" youth who didn't know any better. When they turn 16, they are able to actually go to jail, do not pass go, do not collect $200. Unfortunately, the system still sees them as poor misguided youths, instead of as criminals in training. They continue to get probation, alternatives to incarceration,house arrest community service, etc. It's a revolving door, with the same low life section of society in and out the door on a constant basis. After a few years, the system runs out of alternatives, so the crook starts getting small local bids at the county jail. They continue to draw small bids until they've really worn out their welcome, and FINALLY, someone sends them to the State pen. Of course, once there they might skate AGAIN. First time guys might draw a shock camp, which will cut a chunk of time off their sentences. Non-violent sentences will go to a minimum security facility, and they all get out of parole and usually violate that. So within a short time they're back in the local lock-up on a violation of Parole charge. Bottom line: more people belong in state prison sooner for longer bids with no parole. Save your sob story about all the innocent people in prison.
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 7:26:57 AM EDT
Garand Shooter, It is fun posting back in forth with you. You seem to be very intelligent. I agree with you in that if an accused person is not proved to be guilty, then his property should be returned. However, I still say the agencies should get some of the monies to fund themselves with, ie. equipment, training and the like. I mean why not use the dopers money to do these things with than our tax dollars. Next, remember, if the case is handled properly, and the person is shown to be guilty, the properties, money, etc., is seized by showing facts that tie it in to being purchased or made by illegal drug sales. As far as the value of property being discussed in a briefing, I've seen this done plenty of times, but not for the reason you think. It is to give the other officers involved details of the case, ie. facts and probable cause to show what level of dealer this is. For example, if a person has evidence already pointing towards them being a dealer and they have no legitimate means of income sufficient to sustain their lifestyle, then expensive properties further prove your suspicions. Most of the time the old saying is true: "If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, then it is probably a duck". Also, I too know of agencies that have been caught doing the wrong thing. I say slam them as well, but I believe to take away a valuable tool for law enforcement to fight drug dealing with, is wrong. Just like our stand on gun rights, Don't take away our rights because of the wrong doings of a few. Pat P.S... Good Post, tcsd1236 [^]
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 8:00:48 AM EDT
tcsd1236, It is refreshing to know that most people in prison deserve to be there. The distrubing fact about forfeiture is that many states are expanding this to DUI and speeding. Someone I know got a reckless driving ticket in NYC. (100 MPH in a 50). They confiscated his new $30,000 car. He went to court and beat the reckless driving ticket. NYC still took him to civil court and tried to get his car. 6 months and $6000 dollars later, he got his car back, but it was banned from NYC. Whats next?
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 8:40:51 AM EDT
Originally Posted By LA Cop: "...I will not get into what I think about the guy who posted before [Garand Shooter].
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Please do. You say "play the game." What game is that, Buford T. Justice? Getting caught while looking suspicious? How do you reconcile the different burdens of proof, you fascist JBT pig? Thank God for attorneys who can and will slap you upside your dirtbag head with a section 1983 claim for everything you ever had or will have.
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 9:14:45 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/20/2001 9:25:57 AM EDT by tcsd1236]
Magic: I'd say after the first DUI, a drunk SHOULD lose his car on the second offense. After all, it's a tool being used in the commission of a crime (crime in question being DUI). As for your friend, 100MPH is absolutely crazy in a 50, especially in NYC. I rarely drive that fast, even with my emergency equipment on. I am willing to bet he had far from a spotless record, and I think he shouldn't have a license, period. Personally, I'd give him the option of selling his car and bar him from ever owning a car again.
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 9:29:23 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 9:46:14 AM EDT
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Link Posted: 3/20/2001 9:49:28 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 9:57:02 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 9:58:43 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 10:01:17 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/20/2001 10:17:41 AM EDT by Garand_Shooter]
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 10:02:42 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 10:12:25 AM EDT
tcsd1236 said: 100MPH is absolutely crazy in a 50, especially in NYC. I rarely drive that fast, even with my emergency equipment on. I am willing to bet he had far from a spotless record, and I think he shouldn't have a license, period. Personally, I'd give him the option of selling his car and bar him from ever owning a car again.
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I can agree with some kind of uniform punishment for reckless driving. Maybe a few hundred dollars? They were effectively trying to give him a $30,000 dollar speeding ticket. That doesn't bother you? What you seem to have glossed over here is that even after a criminal court found him innocent of reckless driving, the city still tried to take his car from him in civil court. WTF? What does his driving record have to do with this. I am sure that it wasn't spotless, but he held a valid drivers license at the time of the infraction. He has since wised up and moved from the great state of NY.
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 10:19:12 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/20/2001 10:31:23 AM EDT by Garand_Shooter]
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 10:38:10 AM EDT
http://glocktalk.com/docs/gtubb/Forum14/HTML/002505.html "I didn't think the Chief would let me go but I'm on a temporary D.E.A. task force.I think he sees $$$. Last time I was on one for around 45 days and we didn't get what we had hoped for. Only around $9,000-. This time the target has big $$$ and keep your fingers crossed, I'm hoping for $50,000- $100,000 our share..." This is a comment made by a member of the Goon Squad, er, excuse me, Law Enforcement Agency on: "Cop Talk" a forum where LEO's can discuss issues of the day. It is found at: www.GlockTalk.com YOU be the judge...
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 7:42:08 PM EDT
Magic: The driving record has everything to do with it, because I am sure that the average person doesn't do that sort of thing on a one-time deal. I would guess he's the sort of lead-foot that cannot keep his foot off the pedal. Since he can't do that himself, someone needs to step in to deliver a wake-up call. A few hundred dollars isn't sufficient, in my mind. You say he beat the ticket. Was it reduced or was he found innocent? I would say that if the City went to civil court to keep the car, they must have felt they had grounds to do so. Municipailities don't spend money on court expenses without good reason. NYC has it's own codes; they may have some City law they were basing their action on. Garand: I didn't bother reading every bit of every post you made due to the length, but the farmer one caught my eye. I would say that that law was originally written with the intent to seize assets of poachers and the like who are shooting endangered animals. Hard to believe they are going after farmers with that law.
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 8:13:45 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/20/2001 11:35:29 PM EDT
Magic: The driving record has everything to do with it, because I am sure that the average person doesn't do that sort of thing on a one-time deal. I would guess he's the sort of lead-foot that cannot keep his foot off the pedal. Since he can't do that himself, someone needs to step in to deliver a wake-up call. A few hundred dollars isn't sufficient, in my mind.
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The next time you change lanes without using your blinker, I hope somebody throws a brick through your window. Serves you right! You are making assumptions about the driving record and what happened to the ticket. The ticket was [b]dropped[/b] because the officer did not use radar. The officer estimated the speed. They didn't try so hard to get his vehicle because he was a repeat offender, they tried really hard to get his vehicle because it was worth a lot of money. Bottom line to all this is that forfeiture laws are a crock of shit! One of my cousins got caught poaching on a Federal Reserve. It cost him his gun, his truck, 100,000 dollars, 5 years in jail, and he is now a felon. A gun guy that can't own guns. OH, I forgot, he is a $12 an hour worker. OF course he wasn't caught hunting an endangered species, he was hunting deer. Granted... he needs to get kicked in the nuts for hunting on a Federal Reserve, but geez.
Link Posted: 3/21/2001 12:59:19 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/21/2001 1:14:15 AM EDT by Railgun]
The story about the Kalifornica Millionaire who was shot to death in HIS house by the PIGFlICKERS who's sole purpose was ASSET forfeiture, those FlICKERS need to be hung high. When is this shit going to end? God Damn assholes just eliminated him as he gave em an excuse...how dare he attempt to protect his residence with a firearm! How dare he stand up against the the newest Mafioso element. The government prosecutes crime because they HATE the competition. And God help you if you resist, you end up like this Scott fellow. FlICK You Pigs.[-!-][pissed][-!-][pissed][-!-][pissed][-!-] [rail]Railgun....
Link Posted: 3/21/2001 3:58:33 AM EDT
Magic: Then he got off lucky on the ticket. No where in NY Vehicle and Traffic Law is RADAR required in order to write a speeding ticket. When we are certified for RADAR, we have to be able to visually estimate speed to within a couple of miles of hour of the actual speed. Actually, in terms of my own driving, I am over-scrupulous about my own actions. I would never change a lane without a blinker, I would never clear a stop sign without a full stop, etc. I wish more of you were as careful as I try to be. People should be as careful in their driving skills over their driving career as they are in their first six months behind the wheel. Remember how carefully you observed the rules of the road back then because everything was so new? It should stay that way....it would make my life a lot easier, having to go to fewer accidents and write fewer tickets. But I'm pulling the thread off topic. Railgun: Take a valium. That hate is gonna burn you up inside.
Link Posted: 3/21/2001 4:13:12 AM EDT
Don't take drugs so that's out, as far as hate, consider the fact that some POS can claim that you too have pot growing in your house and BAM....down goes your front door. You coming down the stairs with with weapon at the ready like this Scott fellow did? Goodnight, goodbye, see ya six feet under dude. [rail]Railgun....
Link Posted: 3/21/2001 7:42:22 AM EDT
tcsd1236, I know that being a peace officer can be difficult at times. I am still unsure how you can defend the forfeiture laws in NYC? When is NYC going to start seizing the property of people that are at fault in an accident? Obviously someone that causes an accident is a danger to everyone else on the road. How about people that weave through traffic. That seems pretty dangerous. Seize their cars too! You seem to be too fixated on the details to see where this forfeiture crap is going. The sad thing is that most people do not fight forfeiture, they roll over and take it. According to the ACLU, my friend was the first person that they knew of to get their vehicle back..... even though it was banned from NYC. A funny side note for NYC is that since the forfeiture law has started being enforced, more people run from the law. Add some jail time to that forfeiture... poke me with that stick harder.
Link Posted: 3/21/2001 8:38:06 AM EDT
I defend it because in the cases we mentioned, a DUI or your friend who obviously has a serious problem controlling himself, it sounds justified. There are other cases, such as the farmer mentioned by Garand Shooter, where I don't really agree with it as much.
Link Posted: 3/21/2001 8:52:32 AM EDT
tcsd1236 said: [b]I was going on a call yesterday lights and siren ( more of a rarity than you citizens think, since the admin boys are worried about liability), and some citizen called the Office to complain that I was going a 100 MPH. Pretty accurate visual speed estimate, I thought, when I heard about it at the end of the night from the Sgt.[/b]
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tcsd1236 said: [b]I defend it because in the cases we mentioned, a DUI or your friend who obviously has a serious problem controlling himself, it sounds justified. [/b]
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Your own hypocrisy in plain view.
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