Despite being tasked with enforcing the law, certain police departments across the country have demonstrated staggering levels of lawlessness and corruption. In light of these documented abuses of power, this handful of new stories may not be entirely surprising, but they’re still no less upsetting:
1. LAPD Tracking All Drivers Like Criminals
The Los Angeles Police Department is looking more and more like the NSA with its unrestrained use of Automatic License Plate Readers. The technology allows police officers to collect data on all vehicles that their patrol cars pass and store this information for years to come. The idea is that the data can be used retroactively to place certain people at the scene of a crime or establish a pattern of behavior.
The average car in Los Angeles has already been scanned and stored 22 times, meaning that every motorist is being treated like a criminal by the LAPD. Both the ACLU and EFF (Electronic Frontier Foundation) are pursuing the matter in court in an effort to defend civil liberties and to hopefully shut down yet another senseless program of mass surveillance.
2. Kansas Police Could Arrest People Who File Complaints Against Them
A new bill being considered in Kansas would enable police abuse at a frightening level. The proposed legislation, clearly designed to free cops of accountability, is problematic in many ways:
Kansas Exposed offers a clear example of just how horrible this bill is: the Wichita Police Department, known by residents for seeking revenge on people who report police abuses, has ruled that 100 out of 100 allegations of racial profiling were “false reports.” Not only would this legislation prevent an outside group of giving these reports a proper look over, but also the WPD could charge those who filed the reports with felony perjury.
3. Stealing from Latino Drivers
The immigrant community in Suffolk County, New York is being straight up robbed by local police officers. Evidently, more than a dozen Latino drivers were pulled over without reason. Officers would ask the drivers to hand over their wallet, which would later be returned to them… minus the money. Many of these incidents went unreported for a while; as undocumented immigrants, some victims were fearful of being threatened with deportation for highlighting the theft.
A sting operation confirmed that this trend is legitimate. Sergeant Scott Greene pulled over an undercover Latino detective and was caught on camera swiping $100 from him before sending him on his way. Greene, who has been with the department for 25 years, has pled not guilty to the allegations.
Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may
not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.