[Update: the citation has been dismissed by a judge after Officer Anguiano failed to show up in court. His absence was unexplained but not unexpected]
Over the past year, there’s been a marked increase in the number of local and state police officers working with federal Homeland Security agents along state highways. Perhaps this has always been the case and I never noticed (doubtful). More likely, it’s the logical result of a Department of Homeland Security policy of throwing money at local and state enforcement agencies in the form of Homeland Security grants.
These federal grants are, of course, designed to buy more than just overtime pay for local police and new equipment for state agencies. They’re designed to buy loyalty. Specifically, loyalty to federal handlers and policies at the expense of local communities and individual rights.
Putting to rest the lie that internal Border Patrol checkpoints are primarily about stemming the flow of illegal border crossers (as if you could stop illegal border crossers 40 miles North of the border to begin with), the video below clearly shows that the Department of Homeland Security use so-called immigration checkpoints as a pretext to search for contraband.
In conjunction with the Identity Project, I was interviewed by ETS Pictures in late 2008 regarding my experience at, and subsequent legal action surrounding, an illegal joint task force roadblock on SR86 in Southern Arizona on December 20, 2002. During the interview, we also discussed my ongoing experiences at a Department of Homeland Security checkpoint located in the same geographic area.
ETS Pictures has now made that interview available online in a nine part video series which I’ve linked to below. Additional interviews by ETS Pictures on related subject matter are available on their website and YouTube channel.
The video above is compliments of the Motorhome Diaries crew as they show us the high level of professionalism border agents (on both sides of the border) conduct themselves with when individual rights can be ignored with impunity.
I was a little surprised by how quickly local media picked up the story on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeal’s recent ruling in my roadblock lawsuit.
I was called early in the day for an interview with KOLD Channel 13 News in Tucson along with the host of the radio talk show Declare Your Independence with Ernest Hancock. Additionally, an article on the lawsuit and ruling was published in today’s Arizona Daily Star.
I apologize for being quiet the past few weeks on this blog. Serious internet connectivity issues kept me offline until yesterday. Fortunately, everything was taken care of in time to post some good news regarding my roadblock lawsuit.
On August 4, 2009, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals finally rendered a verdict in my six year civil rights lawsuit against several police officers with the Tohono O’odham Police Department. The lawsuit stemmed from an illegal checkpoint operation conducted on December 20, 2002.