Monday, March 12, 2012

Illegal everything, no-knock warrants, and the right to BearKats

Here are a few disparate items that deserve Grits readers attention.

Suing property owners to reduce crime
Rather than prosecute individual crimes in criminal court, the Harris County Attorney is suing property owners seeking an injunction to end illegal behavior.

'The Right to BearKats'
I've seen reports of quite a few Texas departments purchasing these vehicles and ones like it.

Grand jury no-bill in police shooting becomes issue in Austin DA's race
A racially charged police shooting in Austin remains a flashpoint after separate grand juries refused to indict either the surviving civilian who was accused of driving his car at a officer or that officer's partner who shot the passenger in response. The grand jury's no-bill of the officer has become an issue in the DA's race, with Charlie Baird saying he would take the case back to the grand jury if elected. Grits has not followed the details of this case closely, but I can speak generally from past experience to say, while I like Travis County DA Rosemary Lehmberg well enough on many issues, she's never been aggressive when it comes to prosecuting police officers who are unduly violent or abuse their position, dating back to her position as Ronnie Earle's first assistant. Even when misconduct is obvious, serious charges tend to get pled down to misdemeanors. She may be vulnerable on that score.

'No-knock' warrants may mean civil liability for SAPD
The Texas Civil Rights Project won a victory at the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, which "found that the officers' failure to knock and announce their presence before entering the women's home might have violated their Fourth Amendment rights to be free from illegal search and seizure." Reported the SA Express-News, "The court sent the case back to San Antonio for a jury trial later this year that also could determine whether the city is on the hook because the cops were following its policy of “'no-knock' entries during raids."

'The War on Drugs Has Failed: Is Legalization the Answer?'
See a report from one of the presenters at an event in Houston held by the Baker Institute (as in former Republican Sec. of State James Baker) titled, "The War on Drugs Has Failed: Is Legalization the Answer?"

Consultant: Privatize Cameron jail
Consultant MGT recommended that Cameron County privatize its jail, but it's unclear if privatization would reduce costs or only reduce accountability. Savings would supposedly come from "pension liability, health insurance, liability insurance, workers’ compensation insurance, insurance rates in general, overtime, inmate health care, food service and commissary costs."

'A strange business to be in'
Business Insider posts excerpts from a Corrections Corporation of America presentation to investors and declares it's "one of the creepiest presentations we've ever seen," though they're "not judging," merely concluding that "it's a strange business to be in: Caging humans for profit."

'Illegal Everything'
I'm not a tremendous fan of John Stossel, but this segment titled "Illegal Everything" includes rare commentary on seafood-related felonies, which long-time readers should appreciate, as well as the criminalization of children's lemonade stands.


Anonymous said...


Sweet ----- it is absolutley amazing that a sheriff, whose only qualifications and training requirement is popular vote, can acquire one of these! I bet the deputies have a fist fight over who gets to man the 50 cal. turret and who gets to ride shotgun when called out!
Absolutely frightening, article quotes the sheriff saying "people feel good...feel safe knowing we have one of these." Bullshit! Show me 1 valid emperical study backing that up! There are a lot better ways to spend a quarter of a million dollars on "EFFECTIVE" law enforcement.

Anonymous said...

Thanks heavens - it's been too long since Grits had a story about the real threat to the American Way of Life - the invasion of those of the crustacean persuasion. Me, I think we should be building a sea wall to keep out the shelled invaders, and the lege should make being any kind of shell fish a life without parole offense. I can't understand why those Republican candidates aren't taking this threat seriously, and as for the Democrats - they too are silent. It's all a vast conspiracy of mollusks I tell you ...

Anonymous said...

I'm upset because my PD SWAT/County (they share it) just paid $315,000 for the new BearCat. According to these other prices. We overpaid! We need someone better at price negotiations!

john said...

The godless feds are using "taxpayer" money to arm the local testosterone sociopaths against potential 2nd Amendment defense. At least Rome hired the illegal aliens who eventually took over. The USA is hiring its OWN people as willing henchmen. The robber-baron bankers & pet politicians must be texting, 'LMAO.'
[Captcha NEVER works the first time, or more.]

Anonymous said...

This latest round and every other round of topics Grits shares, shows one painfully obviuos fact.We live in a police state, no doubt about it.Im afraid Americas Ego might be too big to care anymore that we live in a police state.Its the saddest day in our history that we do; but enough people dont seem to care for some reason.

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