Published on May 2, 2012 by HongPong
Video documentation by local activists and independent media shows that police officers and county deputies from across Minnesota have been picking up young people near Peavey Plaza for a training program to recognize drug-impaired drivers. Multiple participants say officers gave them illicit drugs and provided other incentives to take the drugs. The Occupy movement, present at Peavey Plaza since April 7th, appears to be targeted as impaired people are dropped off at the Plaza, and others say they've been rewarded for offering to snitch on the movement.
Local independent media activists and members of Communities United Against Police Brutality began investigating police conduct around the Plaza after witnessing police dropping off impaired people at the plaza and hearing rumors that they were offering people drugs. We videotaped police conduct and interviewed participants, learning some very disturbing information about the DRE program.
Officers stated on record the DRE program, run by the Minnesota State Patrol, has no Institutional Review Board or independent oversight. They agreed no ambulances or EMTs were on site at the Richfield MnDOT facility near the airport where most subjects were taken. Multiple times, participants left Peavey Plaza sober, returned intoxicated, and said they'd been given free drugs by law enforcement. We documented on more than one occasion, someone being told they were sober by one officer, and then picked up by a different officer, and returning intoxicated.
Given the dangers of impaired driving, there is value in training law enforcement officers to distinguish between the effects of various drugs and several common medical conditions. However, we have captured video footage of instances in which DRE trainees recruited subjects who are not already impaired, and those participants say they were given drugs by the officers.
Although program documents indicate that participants must sign a waiver,https://dps.mn.gov/d...sorResponsib... there was no indication from any of the participants interviewed that a waiver was offered or obtained. Further, video footage seems to validate the recollections of participants that no medical personnel or ambulance were on site during the observation and testing in Richfield. A DRE officer told one of our investigators that no Institutional Review Board assessment of the program has been made, a requirement of all experiments involving human subjects. Since it's unethical to encourage people to take drugs--whether by giving them drugs directly or enticing them with food, cigarettes, or other rewards (which participants say they were given)--it is unlikely such a program would pass IRB review as it endangers the test subjects.
According to the WCCO article from May 2011, officer trainees in the past have worked with various non-profit organizations to recruit drug users. It would appear now that they are no longer relying solely on this tactic, instead recruiting users directly and, participants say, providing them with drugs. After the sessions, these individuals are then dropped off in public areas without supportive care, creating a public safety hazard. In an example at Peavey Plaza caught on film, an individual who said he's been smoking courtesy of the police for an hour, crossed a line of Minneapolis police barricades, climbed to the top of a large sign and sat 15 feet above the sidewalk swinging his arms and legs in front of a police camera.
Our investigation points to particular efforts to target and recruit youth. Further, law enforcement officers have been taped recruiting people from the Peavey Plaza area of Nicollet Mall and have dropped off a number of impaired individuals at Peavey Plaza. In some instances, Minneapolis police squad cars were present while DRE trainees recruited people at Peavey Plaza. After receiving drugs, some subjects were asked to snitch on the Occupy movement or asked about various people and activities of Occupy, they said. Given efforts by the Minneapolis city council to pass an ordinance designed to restrict access to Peavey Plaza by the Occupy movement, the conduct of DRE trainees points to the possibility that they are working hand-in-glove with Minneapolis police to discredit and disrupt the Occupy movement.
"I think most people would be very surprised to have our tax dollars used to get people high," states Michelle Gross, president of Communities United Against Police Brutality. "These activities call into question the methods and motives of this DRE training."
Cops Giving Illegal Substances to Occupiers in Exchange for Snitching??? Whaaa?
Posted 04 May 2012 - 12:48 AM
Posted 04 May 2012 - 03:02 AM
Along the same notes....anyone remember back when the police would get people drunk and have them drive to "prove" how booze effects driving? Looking back it was sort of risky of them to give my friend 16+ drinks and let him drive around a parking lot cause they were pissed that he didn't fail the test after a few drinks like everyone else. A hundred or so college kids watching the test.....if he would of hit one of them with the car......
Posted 04 May 2012 - 04:47 PM
I don't understand it at all. How can young kids be expected to abide and respect the law when law enforcement doesn't even follow their own laws?
I think it sends a major message of hypocrisy and confusion.
Posted 04 May 2012 - 05:42 PM
"to the possibility that they are working hand-in-glove with Minneapolis police to discredit and disrupt the Occupy movement."
i can;' seem to find out thie source of the article, anyone wanting to discredit the police might draw the same conclusion.
the spin continues ?
Posted 07 May 2012 - 04:41 PM
I think it's wrong because it sends a confusing message.
If these things are illegal, then why are the cops dispensing them?
If they need to observe study subjects, then it should be done in a medical setting.
Posted 07 May 2012 - 05:35 PM
confusing message - i can see how that might be the way some people look at it.
if the subjects were actually concenred about the possibility of the movement being discredited, why would they go along for thr ride ?
GA didn't vote for them to go, so were they really part of the Occupy movement when they went ?
i still have not seen the video, does it show anyone asking if they were given a waiver or did the producres just not ask ?
Posted 07 May 2012 - 06:49 PM
what is the legal age to participate in a study using illegal drugs ? maybe if Hong Pong gave the correct link we would know. For Field Sobriety Testing volunteers it is 21. maybe they don't even need waivers -
well, participating in studies i imagine would require some kind of someone qualified in a medical field for it, for one, and i would think they would not be allowed to release the participants while still under the influence
Posted 11 May 2012 - 03:01 PM
Police did indeed give Occupiers free pot, new evidence suggests; DRE program suspended
Last Thursday, we told you about explosive allegations made by a new video report -- that state patrol officers and county deputies have been giving drugs to young people hanging out near Peavey Plaza as part of the State Patrol's Drug Recognition Expert program.
Later that day, Eric Roeske, State Patrol public information officers, said, "there's been no evidence or no information that has been presented to us that would substantiate any of the allegations." It now appears he spoke too soon.
In a press release issued earlier today, Minnesota Public Safety Commissioner Mona Dohman announced that the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension has launched a criminal investigation into allegations that a Hutchinson police officer provided marijuana to a DRE program participant last week.
According to the release, an officer from another law enforcement agency witnessed the activity. The witnessing officer, also a DRE participant, then reported the exchange to the Minnesota State Patrol.
Dohman also announced the immediate suspension of the DRE program, which has been ongoing in Minnesota since 1991. The program is intended to provide officers with intoxication-recognition training so they can surmise what substances have been used by intoxicated people encountered in the line of duty.
"Training law enforcement officers to detect drug impairment helps to keep our roads safe, but we need to ensure that all participants follow guidelines and operate within the law," Dohman said. "I have suspended the drug recognition evaluator training pending the outcome of these investigations and until we revisit and review the curriculum for the program."
In summation, it appears there is at least some fire under the billowing cloud of smoke created by the video report, which is the work of local independent media activists and members of Communities United Against Police Brutality.