Is 16% Considered Accurate in Janesville WI?

Published On April 23, 2012 | By John Freeman | Articles

 

While writing my previous article, Passing the smell test,  about the lack of accountability surrounding drug sniffing dogs, I was astonished to find out that many of these warrant-less searches reaped evidence less than half of the time. I know that much of my previous article was based on cases out of the Chicago area. I wanted to see how my local departments fared.

I have pulled public records on a few occasions in the past. I’ve always done so verbally, and given my name, though the records were always rather benign. I deal with legal matters for work on a regular basis, though I am not an attorney. A hobby of mine is studying law. Specifically, statutes that deal with my day to day life, and had reviewed open records laws several times. One statute explicitly states it is unlawful to refuse a record request because the requester refuses to give his name. I thought I’d test that out.

On February 23, 2012 I submitted requests to Deputy Chief John Olsen of the Janesville Police Department, who is the custodian of records, and to Sergeant Wayne Hansen of Rock County Sheriff’s Department, who is according to the RCSD website, in charge of the K9 unit.

By March 8, 2012 I had had a few back and fourths with both departments. They both insinuated I was getting my eyes nowhere near those records without all of my information on their respective forms. Both forms appear to be something drafted quickly by an administrative assistant on Microsoft Word. In other words, these departments were attempting to, “Promulgate (make up) an administrative rule” which is contradictory to law.

What is a “Substantiated Search?

According to the JPD, a substantiation can be made in three different ways. The first way is with physical evidence. This would be, in most cases, a bag of weed in the vehicle. The cop would take the bag of weed and forward it to a prosecutor who would, in turn, present it in court. This is obviously the easiest way, and in my opinion the only reasonable way, to determine if a dog sniff was correct. Physical evidence substantiations are by far the rarest.

Residue is the second possible method. According to JPD, if an officer is able to collect minute amounts of contraband, they will put it in a tester and see if it turns colors. I’m told this “Residue” is not enough to bring a possession charge. Regardless of whether the tester turns colors the officer disposes of the tester but writes it down as a good warrant-less search. I would love to know what percentage this method represents, but with the difficulty I’ve had from both of these departments, I simply don’t have time to obtain those numbers.

The third method, which is the most common way for officers to “substantiate” a warrant-less drug search of a car is “Admission.” I understand this to be when a warrant less search subject admits to having contraband in the car at some time in the past. I don’t understand why after a suspect is removed from a vehicle by threat of violence, he would spontaneously say, “I carried a pot cigarette in the car back in 2007.” I imagine the conversation going something like; “Tell ya what, my dog hit…I’ll let you go for the failure to signal ticket if you “Admit” there used to be drugs in the car.”

Rock County Sheriff’s Office

Wayne Hansen from the Sheriffs Office replied first. His response email addressed me as “John”. Why put my name in quotations? Did he not believe my name is John (which it is)? He told me to fill out a form which required my full name and address. It also asks for my date of birth. Why does a police department need my date of birth to fill a records request? I responded by telling him I didn’t need to fill this out and cited a few statutes. That’s where Gary Groelle got involved.

Gary is the “Custodian of Records” for RCSO. Of course he’ll know the law, I assumed. Unfortunately I got the same run around. He wants nearly enough of my personal information to open a credit line in my name.

Bill Lueders is the President of the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council (FOIC.) I contacted him March 24 after I had run out of options with Gary Groelle of RCSO. Via phone, I explained my plight and he agreed to call Gary. At this point, JPD was at least communicating with me and I felt they were going to adhere to law. Bill explained that rapport with a records custodian can be helpful but acknowledged that by the letter of the law, I was immediately entitled to the records as I had requested.

I’ll be honest, I knew FOIC was serious about what they do. According to their website, wisfoic.org, they’ve been supporting transparency by government for more than 30 years. What I really wanted was for him to tell me he gave a serious ass-chewing to this government agency that takes nearly 50% of my property taxes but can’t spend 45 minutes familiarizing itself with Chapter 19 (Open record laws) of the State Statutes.

That didn’t happen. He contacted me a day or 2 later to tell me Gary Groelle would comply with law. March 28, a month and three days after my original request, I got the following email.

 

I’ve spoken with Bill Leaders reference your open records request. I am prepared to mail the report to you immediately, w/o payment first….The cost is .35 per page, there is just this one page.

Well thanks Gary. You’re not going to charge a 35 cent fee, which is considered excessive, in advance, for a record that’s 4 weeks late. Well done sir.

According to FOIC a fee in excess of actual cost, or 25 cents, is excessive and suspicious. I informed him of this and he sent a document via email the following day. But of course Gary didn’t send the document I requested.

I continued begging, and April 3, 2012, he finally filled my request.

Janesville Police Department

Despite an assertion from John Olsen of JPD that his agency was devoted to transparency, he idled and loafed. A simple request such as this taking more than 10 business days in WI is considered questionable at best. 45 days for this nominal request, in my opinion, is derelict.

I spent 6 weeks sending legal demands for the records from Custodian of JPD Records Deputy Chief John Olsen with no results. Eventually I contacted a local City Councilperson Tom McDonald (Actually I sent a mass email to the entire city council and the Chief of JPD.) He is also a local attorney and promptly responded to my plea for help. Not sure why he could do in 2 days what I had attempted for six weeks but I finally got my records.

Final Results

After weeks of begging for records open to the public, my request was finally filled by JPD. Deputy Chief John Olsen informed me that The Janesville Police K9 unit recovers evidence from warrant-less searches initiated by dogs 37% of the time. He informed me that during the most recent 89 warrant-less searches, physical evidence was recovered only 33 times.

I had asked the Sheriff’s Department for 12 months worth of data. I believe they gave me info from only March 2012. I was happy to get at least something. I was given data which included 18 warrant less searches. How many drug arrests came out of that? Just 3. According to the records, 8.5 times out of ten times no contraband was discovered. Or in other words, his dog is 16% accurate.

This summer The US Supreme Court will decide in “Harris v. Florida” if police need to prove their dogs’ accuracy. In “Jardines v. Florida” the court will decide if police can walk a dog up to our front doors to establish probable cause for a search.  I haven’t smoke pot in 20 years and have never done any other drugs.

I would expect that if some random man rifles through my property without a warrant he’ll be more accurate than a flip of a coin. Unfortunately, that’s not the situation here in Rock County WI.

 

 

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About The Author

  • Brad

    Excellent article, I enjoyed reading your detailed experiences dealing with the authorities getting information!

  • t.

    Gross misunderstanding of the way things work and / or the truth. A K9 “alert” isn’t bad or false just because you don’t find the dope in the car. The odor can remain for some time after the time is removed. Just watch your own dog. They sniff thing long after the food, or animal, or person has left. By your standard, in 16 years I’ve only ever been at 1bad sniff then. And that dog wanted to eat part of the trunk out because he was still smelling it so hard.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for certifications and records of training, including controlled tests and results of those test for accuracy.

    I just don’t think that your approach to this subject or the analysis of this information it quite right.

  • Andy

    We just had a k-9 stabbed and killed in our city. It was a good week!

  • Yuven Tayclue

    Yeah…and we don’t care because we know the dogs can be given cues to hit…dope or not.

  • Pete Malloy

    Andy, really dude? Hate cops, whatever, but a dog is a dog. It doesn’t understand the law or how you jobless assholes hate what he does. A dog does what a dog does and to celebrate one being stabbed is fucking wrong. You sir, are a piece of shit.

  • Andy

    Hey Pete, making assumptions again? It was a joke first. Jobless? I spent 14 years in the corpsand own my own consulting business

  • Andy

    Why is it that cop bitches like you have to make a living off my hard earned tax dollars instead of getting a real job?

  • Pete Malloy

    Joke or not it was in very poor taste. Its always a celebration of violence with you guys. It is hypocritical. State sponsored violence is unacceptable, but violence against agents of the state, be they man or animal, is ok? What a joke.

  • Common Sense

    @Andy

    You promote the killing of animals? You can dislike cops, whatever, but a dog is a loving animal and those who’d abuse them are criminals, and worse yet, those who cheer over their death is pathetic. A new low.

  • Common Sense

    @Andy

    Contact the admin and have your comment removed and I’ll do the same.

  • Andy

    Common, I have a better idea. Go fuck yourself.

  • Common Sense

    An ex-marine, showing the nation what honor really means…

  • Andy

    We actually call ourselves former marines.

  • defjeff

    Nicely written. It is a real shame that the PD is not more forthcomming on a simple records request!

  • ElRojo

    I like how the cops on here want to act outraged by someone condoning the killing of a dog but if you take a quick stroll through any pro-cop message boards, the condoning of killing human beings is overwhelming, and yet there is no outrage from any cops there. You people are so disingenuous and contradictory it is laughable. I think you are doing more harm than good here Common Sense… You are just giving people even more reasons to dislike you and those you represent.

  • deepelemblues

    Cops insisting on calling all drugs “dope” always makes me grin, it’s a 1960s mentality at work.

  • The_Lakewood_4_are_burning_in_Hell

    Amen Elrojo,

    The police one comments section looks like a chat board for serial killers.

    And before Team Blue chimes in, I sound just as bad. Guilty as charged. But I am unlikely to be stopping your wife or daughter on a county road late a night for “swerving in her lane” or whatever made up cop bullshit they use to justify stops.

  • Andy

    Lakewood,
    I love reading your posts. You always hit the nail right on the head. I think you would have been a great officer to serve under.

  • The_Lakewood_4_are_burning_in_Hell

    The Army is hiring.

  • Andy

    Lol! I’d be lying if I said it hasn’t crossed my mind.

  • t.

    The army is hiring. This guys don’t qualify…too many drug convictions.

  • Andy

    We’re you referring to me t? I actually have zero drug convictions, and I’m asked constantly by different branches of the service to come back.

  • wiguy

    t, you said the author misrepresented the facts. Could you explain this? Seems pretty cut and dry. If I buy a used car that had a bunch of weed smoked in it should I be subject to search at any time?

  • The_Lakewood_4_are_burning_in_Hell

    Don’t you have some brown people to harrass or women to accuse of lying about rape? Or masturbating over the victory that crying at your sentencing gets for Team Blue?

    The Army does, however, have a problem with cops. All of the Abu Ghraib torturers were Guardsman from West Virginia’s Team Blue (prison guards, mostly).

    Never go on a convoy with Team Blue guardsmen. I did with a group from Baghdad to Kuwait City. Complete Clusterfuck.

  • The_Lakewood_4_are_burning_in_Hell

    Good point wiguy. Maybe every cop should have all of his $20 bills tested for cocaine residue. Every positive result should be followed by the same level of care and concern Team Blue shows after a “dog hit”.

    And remember folks, rasinettes. Make sure the cop dogs eat them all during the search.

  • Speezo

    t. says:
    April 23, 2012 at 10:43 pm

    Gross misunderstanding of the way things work and / or the truth. A K9 “alert” isn’t bad or false just because you don’t find the dope in the car. The odor can remain for some time after the time is removed. Just watch your own dog. They sniff thing long after the food, or animal, or person has left. By your standard, in 16 years I’ve only ever been at 1bad sniff then. And that dog wanted to eat part of the trunk out because he was still smelling it so hard.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for certifications and records of training, including controlled tests and results of those test for accuracy.

    I just don’t think that your approach to this subject or the analysis of this information it quite right.

    @T

    So apparently you somehow found a way to paint that little 16.67% success rate as 100% success. Unfortunately, juries believe the nonsense they are fed by the state including the myth that dogs don’t have bad hits. Well, yeah they do. In fact they had 15 bad hits in Janesville in possibly only one month. It is implied that if the dog alerts then there ARE drugs in the car. No cop will tell a jury that “no, actually dogs only get us dope about 16.7% of the time but we search 100% of the time anyway.”

    And when it comes to trial date nobody will ever know how often dogs hit and drugs aren’t found and the myth that dogs are always right (not even considering that they can be instructed to false alert by the handler) will continue.

    I really am disappointed that so many people accept the world as they see it or believe what they were told as children. We are supposed to be Americans. We are supposed to be objective and make up our own mind and challenge things. Like for instance the accuracy of “drug” dogs or how much law enforcement complies with records requests in accordance with the “law.” It really makes me ashamed how complacent people can be.

    An ironic quote maybe “It is easy to take liberty for granted when you have not had it taken from you”- Dick Cheney

  • The_Lakewood_4_are_burning_in_Hell

    Andy,

    There is a desperate need for good NCOs, especially with the right shoulder patches. We are about to start a major drawdown and with it a loss of senior leaders. The Army has been broken by 10 years of unremitting low intensity combat with multiple deployments for everyone. We will need 10 more years to fix it unless they do it right this time, which they won’t. It will be the 92-95 bloodbath all over again.

    Consider coming back in 18 months after we turn out the lights in Afghanistan. I have known several Marine to Army crossover NCOs and they were consistently outstanding.

  • Andy

    Lakewood,
    The wife and I have talked about it. Thanks for the input, we will see.

  • The_Lakewood_4_are_burning_in_Hell

    Believe it or not, the military today is full of libertarians and freedom minded people, especially in the officer corps in the less rigid specialties. Ron Paul got the most money donated by troops to political campaigns this year.

    One colonel I had a brief TDY with told me after he retired, he was moving to a state with legal medical marijuana. Not that he was interested in using it, but in his mind that would be a state where the powers that be would leave you the hell alone.

    And with the righteous drug warriors and their posturing here, he makes a good point.

  • Andy

    That’s great to hear. I have become a libertarian in the last few years. I’m pretty sure I would be able to keep my same rate. I would love to be in some kind of training role. Teaching young soldiers would be extremely rewarding to me.

  • Pete Malloy

    The correct term is marine no longer serving active duty. Once a marine always a marine jackass. If you are going to make shit up, at least do your homework.

  • Andy

    @pete,
    Well I try to be nice but when a dumb fucking pig who’s profession is probably one of the most dishonorable lines of work in this country, questions my service, that pisses me off. I don’t know where you ever heard that saying, maybe that is one some former marines use, probably the fucking POG ASS MOTHERFUCKERS LIKE YOU. Since I joined and graduated from boot camp, MCRD San diego golf company 1996 we were always told never say ex marine, always former marine. In fact there are challenge coins you can buy when you get out that specifically say former marine on them. So genius, there are many marines in the reserves, so do you think they use that stupid saying? What about someone on IRR, you can google that to jackboot, what do they say? Long story short, you’re a fucking idiot and I hope someone blows your pig ass away some night and makes the world a better place you fucking troll.

  • Andy

    You did get one right with once a marine always a marine. I’ll give you that joe Friday.

  • Andy

    @pete,
    Here dipshit, below are the proper references you can use when referring to any marine active, reserve, IRR or out completely.

    “Marine”, since the title is permanent, once earned.
    “Veteran Marine” or “Prior-service Marine” can refer to anyone who has been discharged from the Corps.
    “Retired Marine” refers to those who have completed 20 or more years of service and formally retired, or have been medically retired.
    “Former Marine” is considered acceptable among those who are honorably discharged from the United States Marine Corps.
    “Sir” or “Ma’am” is appropriate out of respect.
    According to one of the “Commandant’s White letters” from Commandant Alfred M. Gray, Jr., referring to a Marine by their last earned rank is appropriate.[118]
    Marines that have left service with a less than full honorable discharge might still be considered Marines (depending on the view of the individual), however that title is in keeping with a stigma, and many will avoid the issue altogether by addressing the individual by name with no other title.

  • Pete Malloy

    You, if you actually served, are a disgrace to that uniform. You wish me dead for no other reason than an occupation you wrongly believe I hold. I believe strongly in freedom of speech, and while I like to antagonize the more radical types, I would certainly never wish them ill will for their opinions. There is always a line that should not be crossed, and advocating violence toward individuals for nothing more than a non violent opinion is one of them. You, Lakewood, and a few others are examples of the wedge that seperates law enforcement officers from the community. It is the mindless call to violence that forces the militarization of police departments. To paraphrase Lt Col. Grossman, when someone will kill you simply for the uniform you wear there is a word for that, it is called war. You radical bomb thrower types rejoicing the deaths of officers, and threatening their families, create the very nature that you so loathe. That is the ironic part, you are your own worst enemies.

  • Andy

    Disgrace to my uniform? You don’t even have the right to look at lakewoods or my uniforms. You say we are own worst enemies? The cops can say the same thing. We are the ones with extensive military experience who would gladly offer our knowledge to the future warriors who are going to eventually do battle with the oppressors with badges. The gloves are off, I’m sick of the fucking trolls like you that come to this sight just to start shit. You tried to question my service and you made yourself look Iike a complete idiot. I can take most trolling but, don’t question my service.

  • Pete Malloy

    You are welcome to be offended, but I do not believe for a second that someone so disrespectful could have ever served in the marine corp. Your conduct is unbecoming of such a title. 99% of the comments on here are at best grossly exagerated, and most likely fictitous. The internet is a place for people to embelish the truth and the majority of the writings on here are obviously works of fiction. You are either a child, or a wash out. I enjoy the laughable nature of copblock and occasionally it is enjoyable to comment and watch you froth at the mouth. Sorry, but nobody actually takes this seriously

  • Speezo

    I see two guys are arguing over marine terminology while the article is about something entirely different. Just my opinion but marine terminology comes in at a distant second to civilian rights being seized using poor methodology like drug dogs that “hit” correctly at a rate below 20%.

    But hey, while people are going away for years for plant possession two guys are arguing over marine terminology. They fought with guns abroad to fight over titles at home? I think there are more important things guys, really.

  • Pete Malloy

    The problem is the animal smells the substance even after it is gone. If anything the animal is too accurate. Warrantless searches of motor vehicles are nothing new anyway. The carol doctrine established a warrantless search of motor vehicles decades ago. The dog is just a means to further probable cause. the stats demonstrate the times evidence was recovered, not the accuracy of the dog. I’ve personally watched demonstrations put on with these animals, and they are impressive. The error is usually in the handler, or when the animal and handler are new to one another. I would enjoy a civil discussion on such things, but violence, or threats of such, seem to be the prevailing language here

  • t.

    Speezo: Are you having some comprehension problems? No, really?

    Did you read the second paragraph? Apparently not.

    My overall point about the dogs are that they can still smell where things have been stored. The times when I’ve used K9′s there has been more to it then just run it around the car for no reason. I’m not saying that doesn’t happen in other places though.

    Remember, that little bit of marijuana that dropped when you were rolling that blunt…the dog smells it. That smoke in you or your friends clothing….the dog smells it. The last k9 video that was posted here, along with his supposed control video, were completely debunked.

    Just because I don’t find a kilo in the glove box doesn’t mean I lied or the dog was wrong.

    I’ll repeat it again for you…slow as I can so you can understand it….I’m all for records and training. All of the handlers that I know in the area keep records, do follow up investigations about the vehicle searches, the suspect tracks, item searches. I helped a handler on some unusual terrain a month ago and he was going to add that to his departments training scenarios. They strive for accuracy and excellence.

    Just looking at a cold number that drugs were recovered in only 16 out of a 100 times doesn’t really explain the whole story. There is a lot more involved.

  • Andy

    Conduct unbecoming? What are you going to google More military terminology to make yourself sound intellegent about the armed forces? You’re pathetic. You sound like one of those soldier of fortune wanna be’s who never had the balls to join themselves. Because I was a marine for 14 years I’m supposed to love cops? To tell you the truth, most marines at least, can’t Stand police officers, and we rip the ones who get out and join. The marines I know that have become cops are the wash outs who were the shit birds of the platoon. Believe what you want wanna be if it makes you feel better about being a fucking coward yourself. I bet you sport a crew cut don’t you? And have all Richard marchenko’s black op books? And when you”re out in the bar you say things like these colors don’t run? Sad. I am very proud of my service but, it makes me sick every day when I see these soldier, marine wanna be’s, on TV shitting on citizens rights, driving around in bearcats and handling military style weapons they have know idea how to operate.

  • Pete Malloy

    Who is Richard Marchenko? I feel one of us is very delusional, and I don’t believe it to be me. Andy, I’ve never said these colors don’t run. I don’t know what soldier of fortune is either. I stated numerous times, I don’t believe most of what I read on the internet. I think this site is humorous. Andy, you are a caricature of the disgruntled soldier feeling abandoned by his country. It is cheap entertainment at your expense. The videos posted by copblockers portray individuals with average intelligence starting fights that they won’t win. The articles, are often hypocritical. When LEOs use obscure laws it is an atrocity, but when dude uses it to obtain information from the PD it is celebrated as a protection of rights. No one here is making a difference. I enjoy the easy laugh. I won’t deny it. I watch the videos, read the posts and I laugh at how far off some people are. I love a good debate, and if I thought for a minute it could happen, I would probably be a bit more serious.

  • Common Sense

    @Pete

    I agree. I noted the one poster who was in Iraq/Afgan for 9 years, or was it 10, and also fought alongside the IDF twice. Maybe he was a Navy Seal, yeah, that’s it I bet. Even if they did, they were probably 2-3 reserves who now can’t find a job and must use pot to cope with their depression against the oppression by ‘the man.’

    They are mostly paper terrorists, all bark, no bite. They will talk big game, but never have facts to back it up. “The rebellion is coming! When it happens! We’ll stop the tryanny!” – whatever you need to tell yourself, whatever is your coping mechanism buddy.

  • Andy

    I’m a marine not a soldier, and I don’t feel abandoned by my country. I think it’s great you think this site is comical but, it’s funny it gets more hits everyday here and on Facebook. I bet you think most of those hits are people looking for entertainment value. Who’s delusional now.

  • Andy

    I was marine common, never was really around navy seals very much. I tried pot twice in highschool wasn’t for me. It is sad that some vets are having a hard time finding jobs. That’s why the last two people I hired made sure they were veterans. Maybe you should help a few too.

  • Pete Malloy

    That’s cute. The facebook generation is going to change the world. You hired them to what, drive illegal drugs across the country because big bad Uncle Sam won’t let them have them? Andy, you can reply all day and I will laugh, respond accordingly, and then laugh some more. You aren’t a marine. You have walked into this childish argument like any good teenager would. I’m playing you, and you take the bait.

  • Andy

    Hilarious, such a wanna be you deny others service. You van just say thank you. I don’t see it as a childish discussion. Pete why didn’t you ever join the service? Were scared? Well like I said above if you have a job and can hire a vet please do. Maybe you can do your part that way.

  • t.

    What was the topic of this thread again…

    Flakewood and the Legion must of high jacked again.

  • wiguy

    t, I actually agree with you on this. I’d love to hear a cop’s opinion on the article itself with an explanation. Who fucking cares about semantics. You all served our country proudly and everyone knows it. God damn…

  • Common Sense

    @Andy

    Sgt Stein will be sending you an application soon…

  • PSOSGT

    An alert by a dog shows that the ODOR of an illegal item or item the dog is trained to search for is present. THE ODOR!!!!! LONG time ago, I spent 8 years in the Marines. I was a combat engineer, and we used explosives, alot. I had a “day pack” that I used while out training to carry a bunch of c-4, det cord and other items while out on a 2 week training excercize. When we flew home I used this same pack to carry my stuff on a plane. They swabbed it at the airport and got a positive hit for explosives. All my stuff got searched, even though I hadn’t had any explosives in the bag for several days. Does this mean that the machine is wrong?????…NO!! Same thing goes for a dog.

    I find it very common for a dog to “hit” on a seat in the car after I’ve removed passengers. Frequently these passenger’s had dop in thier pockets or crotch. So the dog was hitting on the odor left by those drugs.

    Here’s another mental picture for you guys. Ever taken a stinky shit? Something that fills the bathroom, and hallway with a shitty odor?? When you flush the toilet does the odor disapear right away or does it linger? If you can still smell the shit after you flushed your poop, does that mean your nose is wrong?

  • deepelemblues

    “Here’s another mental picture for you guys. Ever taken a stinky shit? Something that fills the bathroom, and hallway with a shitty odor?? When you flush the toilet does the odor disapear right away or does it linger? If you can still smell the shit after you flushed your poop, does that mean your nose is wrong?”

    It means the shit isn’t there, just as the drugs aren’t there. The justification for drug dogs giving probable cause to search is that if they hit it is reasonable to believe there are drugs in the vehicle. As the statistics show – over and over again, the statistics show – no, that is not reasonable to believe, and there is great potential for dogs hitting because they’ve been given a cue to do so not because they’ve actually smelled anything. So why should a drug dog be enough to justify a judge signing off on a warrant, or pressuring someone to consent to a search? Classic cop tactic, “consent to a search or I’ll bring a dog and then get a warrant.” The dog hitting is already implied as a foregone conclusion. It’s going to happen. When does a drug dog not hit? Who knows, seems like never.

  • wiguy

    PSOSGT, So if the guy who used to own my car was a heavy drug user how can searching my car be justified? Do you support these searches?

  • Angry

    @Cop posters

    Guys we’re not disagreeing with your statements. You’re absolutely right that dogs or detectors can detect a trace presence of weed/explosives. We are not debating with that.

    Here’s the dilemma. Since detection of trace amounts of contraband qualifies as probable cause, it gives police excessive power to invade privacy. For example, if I shake hands with somebody who handled weed, the trace amounts give you guys the right to cuff and search me. You know about the whole, “Ninety-percent of all US bills have trace amounts of cocaine on them?” By the same logic, possession of currency is probable cause for detainment. Should police have the power to search these people even though they aren’t committing crimes?

    Plus, K9s are easily exploitable if the cop is crooked. A single weed flake can give the police permission to cuff and search anybody. The point of having probable cause is to remove doubt, not create more of it.

  • Angry

    Also, didn’t they do an experiment recently where they got K9s to hit on bags with no drugs or even trace amounts of them? It was posted here.

  • http://www.copblock.org eriq

    Hey anybody ever find it grotesque that they hold actual funerals with eulogies for police K9′s, the bagpipes, doggie badge numbers are retired, the caravans, taps, flags what is up with that or is it taboo to raise this question-it’s a “news story” every couple of months in the papers. Anybody have an opinion about this outlandish display–what is the point. Also with that badge the dogs do have extra rights-if a K9/Officer gets hurt your sentence is enhanced.