Richmond Activist Nate Cox Cop Blocks Police Checkpoint
Guest post below by a great activist and good friend, Nate Cox. Check out his blog for his other writings:
March 17th, 2011 I had witnessed my second “sobriety check-point” within in matter of 6 days in my town, of Mechanicsville (within Hanover County). The first checkpoint I witnessed, I was leaving work at around 10:30pm on March 11th.. I noticed the checkpoint at the intersection just adjacent to the shopping center where my work is. I couldn’t believe my eyes. It was the first check point I had seen since living in the county for 17 years. I didn’t get caught in it, because it was in the opposite side of the road. So I ended up making a quick right and parked in the shopping center to capture some video and commentary of the scene, you can watch that here (includes encounter with police).
However this blog is not about that police check point.. it’s about the check point I witnessed just 6 days after the one mentioned above. I was coming home from a movie in Richmond. It was early only around 8:30pm (St. Patrick’s Day evening). As I was about 2 miles from my County line, on Mechanicsville Turnpike, I was nearing the county line which first requires me to go up a steep hill.. then down the same hill before a long straight-away over a swamp lands. As SOON as I hit the crest of the hill and started down ward.. I noticed something going on. Traffic was backed up 1/4 of a mile at least.. I didn’t see ANY blue lights.. but I could see tons of cop cars and VDOT equipment, cordoning off the lanes down to one lane. I quickly realized it was a massive check point.. I couldn’t believe it… As I was approaching the sign that said “Sobriety Roadcheck ahead: Prepare to stop Henrico Police I noticed a cop car in the median, facing the direction I was going with no lights on – my assumption was he was regulating “squirters”. I took a picture of the traffic jam, and the check point sign, and then as I passed the sign I maneuvered my car though the traffic cones that had been placed and made a u-turn. I was shocked to see I did not get pulled over by the cops, for which later, after talking with Henrico Police Internal Affairs is supposedly “illegal” to do.
So I went home and made it home successfully but not before immediately facebooking about the checkpoint. I was furious and sick to my stomach – two things that fire me up quick 1) Illegal Wars 2) The Police State. I was determined to do some Cop Block‘ing! I was home for a matter of minutes before I ran down do CVS to pick up some sign making materials. I made a sign with glitter paint that said “Police Ahead” and another one that said, “Do Not Consent”. I grabbed cameras, flashlights, my glock 26 and my signs and headed back to the check point. I parked my car and proceeded to start signwaving at around 10pm. I was standing in the road, in the direction that people would get caught up in the check point, about 1/8th – 1/4th of a mile from the top of the hill where you at that point would see the check point. There IS, one last chance to make a U-Turn at the very top of that hill.
So I sign-waved, about 30-45 minutes into it, a cop flashing his blue lights came up from the opposite direction and made a u-turn where I was posted up and sorta blocked off the road while he questioned me from his car. I got about half of that encounter on video About 20-30 minutes after that encounter, with the cop who never ID’ed himself.. another cop (quite possibly the same one) came and parked his car in the parking lot I was standing in front of by the road. He immediately got out of his car and whipped out his cell-phone and began what appeared to be shooting video. As you’ll see in the video, he never ID’ed himself either.
Thirty minutes after that encounter with the cop, a buddy of mine finally met up with me to help me sign wave and shoot video. We walked over to the top of the hill where we could seee the checkpoint at around 12:20am. We shot some video recapping the situation and noticed after we shot the video they were taking down the roadblock. I’m not sure if we had anything to do with it or not. But I DO know we had a dozen or two cars honk (in support), wave, thumbs up, and even turn around before they made it to the checkpoint and even some thank you’s.
I’m disgusted at the police state we live in. I did what I did to raise awareness and to educate people of their rights. The Police have no authority over me. I own & govern myself and take responsibility for my actions. Just because they have swore an oath to do X,Y,Z.. doesn’t mean they have additional rights as I do, or are immune to the law. We’ve got to not only educate ordinary citizens of their rights when encountered by cops, but we need to try, and educated cops of what their job is supposed to be! USE DISCERNMENT in what laws you enforce! Do NOT enforce “crimes” in which there is NO victim, “No Victim, No Crime.”
Large of amount of credit for knowing my rights when encountered by cops go to websites Cop Block and Flex Your Rights.