Gwinnett County Employees Use of Forced Blood Draws

Gwinnett Co. Sheriff employees – those on the Rapid Response Team – as well as nurses contracted, have been involved in the taking blood from individuals without their consent. To be clear, individuals who have not harmed anybody or any property have been kidnapped, strapped to a table, and against their will, having their blood taken by some employed at the Gwinnett County Sheriff’s Department.

If you or I did that what would it be called?

gwinnett-county-sheriff-department-rapid-response-team-copblock
Those on Gwinnett Sheriff’s Deptartment’s Rapid Response Team have restrained individuals who’ve harmed no one else, against their will, while a nurse takes their blood.

GWINNETT COUNTY SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT
770.619.6500
2900 University Pkwy. NE
Lawrenceville, GA 30043
http://gwinnettcountysheriff.com

At least two Gwinnett Co. Sheriff employees have tried to deflect the culpability of their actions or the actions done by their colleagues, by focusing on the fact that the blood draws done rely on search warrants obtained by those at the Gwinnett police outfit.

No matter the costume or badge worn, those who initiate force are in the wrong.

GWINNETT POLICE DEPARTMENT
770.513.5000
75 Langley Drive
Lawrenceville, GA 30046
http://gwinnettcounty.com/portal/gwinnett/Departments/Police

FOIA STATUS

  • on Wed., Nov. 13, 2013 a FOIA request was submitted by Pete Eyre in writing when at the facility used by the Gwinnett Sheriff outfit.
  • on Thur., Nov. 14, 2013 Eyre received a call from Shannon Volkodav, an employee of the Gwinnett Sheriff outfit, to clarify the information sought
  • on Thur., Nov. 14, 2013 Liz Hallsworth [770-619-6671, elizabeth.hallsworth@gwinnettcounty.com], an employee of the Gwinnett Sheriff outfit, sent Eyre two emails, each of which included a .pdf attachment, which are now uploaded to http://scribd.com/copblock and embedded below for transparency
  • on Thur., Nov. 14, 2013 Eyre called the Gwinnett police outfit, per the recommendations of Volkodav and Hallsworth, to learn the names of those individuals who did not give consent for a DUI test who later had their blood forcible taken, per a search warrant obtained by Gwinnett police employees. Eyre was eventually directed to Penny [770.513.5250], who facilitates FOIA requests

 

2013 11 14 a Gwinnett County Sheriff FOIA by CopBlock
A 21-pg document sent by Liz Hallsworth (770.619.6671), an employee of the Gwinnett Co. (GA) Sheriff’s outfit to Pete Eyre.

  • Page #1 is a cover sheet
  • Page #2- RRT 2013.07.20, Pages #3-5 show the Rapid Response Team roster by rank at specific dates [Page #3 2013.04.26; #4 2012.08.17, #5 2012.04.20.
  • Pages #6-12 the “Pre-Admissions” policy signed by D Pinkard, employed at the Gwinnett Sheriff outfit.The text details how people being brought to the facility to be caged should be treated.

Note that section “J.1” allows for pat downs to be done by a person of a different gender, so long as a colleague – who too is a different gender than the one being patted-down – is present.

The person being caged – as outlined in section “K” – is then subjected to a body image scanner. In fact, it’s proscribed that that person has to have two images taken – first with feet on yellow footprints, then on blue footprints.

The password and login for the body scanner is given as “General” and “L3-scan1”

Section “Q”, with the heading “Blood Draw Search Warrants”, begins with “GCSO [Georgia County Sheriff’s Office] personnel will assist with the service of a search warrant for arrestees who have refused a voluntary blood draw.”

Note that:
– someone and taking their blood is sugar-coated as “service of a search warrant”.
– this section condones the initiation of force. Its claims that it’s just for a Person A to violate Person B’s rights, simply because Person A wears a badge

 

2013 11 14 b Gwinnett County Sheriff FOIA
A 5-pg document sent by Liz Hallsworth (770.619.6671), an employee of the Gwinnette Co. (GA) Sheriff’s outfit to Pete Eyre. It was the second of two documents Hallsworth sent to Eyre on 2013.11.14 related to a  FOIA request Eyre had submitted when at the facility that houses the Gwinnette Co. Sheriff’s outfit.

  • Page #1 is a cover sheet.
  • Pages #2-5 discloses Police Number 8.U on Security and Control used by Gwinnett Co. Sheriff employees, specifically related to the use of a restraint bed.

The definition given for a “Restraint bed” – indicated as section “IV” – is to limit the behavior of those “at risk of harming themselves, others or causing property damage” yet the stated policy – which employees of the Gwinnett Co. Sheriff’s outfit each chose to act upon – is to restrain every person who denies consent, including those compliant, behavior that doesn’t then fit within the defined use of the restraint bed.

However – and this is what happens when the same person or group of people is allowed to write “law” and then interpret “law” – in section “B”, the “Conditions for Use”, another justified use is claimed: “To minimize the possibility of a situation escalating.”

Again, the blood draws are being done against the stated refusal of the individual. It’s not surprising that someone strapped to a table against their will might become agitated. This policy claims that sheriff employees can proactively initiate more force to curtail such pushback. Pretty draconian…

The policy continues under section “C” to say, “A minimum of five deputies shall be all be altered”, which sounds good in theory as it means more eyes, which one would hope would deter unacceptable behavior, though the rest of the sentence reveals the nefarious reason, “to control and secure the inmate’s arms and legs” with another maintaining “control of the inmates head.”

Later, under section “D”, it’s noted that should an inmate refuse to comply, “deputies will use the amount of physical force reasonably necessary to establish and maintain control.” Keep in mind that the so-called “inmate” has done nothing to harm another person or anyone else’s property.

What right does anyone have to hold another down against their will? And to take from them their bodily fluids?

 

2013 11 18 Gwinnett Co. RRT personnel

Page #1 is a cover sheet.

Page #2-3 gives the name and departmental email and phone for Gwinnett Co. Sheriff’s employees on the Rapid Response Team (who were involved in the restraining of people suspected of DUIs, against their will, for a forced blood draw-

Apparently individuals who work in Gwinnett County aren’t alone in their policy of initiating force for those who refuse to give consent. The program began in 2006 in Douglas County, which is just west of Atlanta and has been used by the Nighthawks – a unit of the Georgia State Patrol that focuses on DUIs, as well as employees of Cherokee County, which is just north of Atlanta. When Gwinnett County employees started their policy of “No Refusals” in January of 2013, the thing that set them apart was their default to restrain every person who did not give consent.

CHEROKEE COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE
678.493.4100
498 Chattin Drive
Canton, GA 30115
http://cherokeega-sheriff.org

DOUGLAS COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE
770.942.2121
8470 Earl D. Lee Blvd.
Douglasville, GA 30134
http://sheriff.douglas.ga.us

GEORGIA STATE PATROL – NIGHTHAWKS
404.624.7082
959 E. Confederate Ave. SE
Atlanta, GA 30316
http://dps.georgia.gov/nighthawks-dui-task-force-

The initiation of force against a person is never justified. That statement remains factual whether the action is done by you, your neighbor, or someone who happens to don a badge.

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Pete Eyre

Pete Eyre is co-founder of CopBlock.org. As an advocate of peaceful, consensual interactions, he seeks to inject a message of complete liberty and self-government into the conversation of police accountability. Eyre went to undergrad and grad school for law enforcement, then spent time in DC as an intern at the Cato Institute, a Koch Fellow at the Drug Policy Alliance, Directer of Campus Outreach at the Institute for Humane Studies, Crasher-in-Chief at Bureaucrash, and as a contractor for the Future of Freedom Foundation. In 2009 he left the belly of the beast and hit the road with Motorhome Diaries and later co-founded Liberty On Tour. He spent time in New Hampshire home, and was involved with Free Keene, the Free State Project and The Daily Decrypt.