Tallahassee PD's Pathetic Response to Rachel Hoffman's Death

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I've already discussed the shamelessness of Tallahassee Police Chief Dennis Jones, who blamed Rachel Hoffman for her own death after his officers got her killed in a botched drug sting. But the more I think about it, the more sickening it becomes.

This statement from the Hoffman family's attorneys perfectly highlights how insulting and evasive this response from Chief Jones really is:

From the press conference's inception, the Tallahassee Police Department took the opportunity to inform the community of the victim's criminal charges, and made the point, both directly and indirectly, that her death was the result of her breaking protocol during the sting operation. The family and the attorneys for Rachel Hoffman have serious concerns about the statement that Rachel somehow caused her own death.

Rachel Hoffman was a 23-year-old woman, a graduate of Florida State University, and a daughter, beloved family member, and friend. At no time during the press conference was it addressed that Rachel Hoffman was not a trained law enforcement officer, was not on the Tallahassee Police Department Vice Squad Unit, or that she had taken any training classes regarding the Tallahassee Police Department's "protocol". It was not addressed why Rachel was placed in this situation in the first instance, other than she had criminal charges pending. However, even with criminal charges pending, the main concern is how Rachel came to this position and what measures were taken in order for her to agree to go there. Her family and attorneys believe it was her involvement in the drug sting that led to Rachel's death, and not the fact that she allegedly broke any protocol, but rather that she was led to the site in the first place. [baynews9.com]

Officers pressured her into becoming an informant and instructed her to attempt a massive purchase of ecstasy, crack cocaine, and a handgun. The suppliers either knew she was setting them up or simply killed her as part of a robbery. In either case, it was the police who instructed her to approach dangerous people with a suspicious request.

It's their fault she died, but also the fault of the drug war itself, which treats police as heroes when they learn to excel at manipulating and endangering people.
Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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Florida governor Charlie

Florida governor Charlie Crist expresses sympathy for informant's death... says "Let Attorney General Bill McCollum finish investigating this before we pass judgment."

...as he prepares to sign McCollum's bill into law -- a 3 year mandatory minimum for 25 plants.

McCollum has...

always been a tool of the authoritarian right...and can be counted on to, do the right, wrong thing. A civil case is what is needed...and what the wrongdoers fear most.

I disagree with using a

I disagree with using a civil case. Those responsible for this girl's death
should suffer the same fate as Eduard Delacroix in The Green Mile.
Roll on two!

Snitches, entrapment, and the Constitution

The old school of thought regarding snitches was the right one: agreeing to snitch to or for the cops reveals a major character flaw. They've gone way beyond snitching and informing into setting people up, i.e. entrapment, which is unconstitutional as hell, as well as being evidence of a major character flaw in those who make such a deal with the devil to get their sentences reduced. Rather than succumbing to scare tactics used by police people should have the huevos to refuse to cave going into making the choice to take that chance in doing something they have to know will possibly lead to arrest. The very idea of taking someone arrested for marijuana and ecstasy and using them to set up cocaine and gun dealers has to be the most asinine decision this police force will ever make and I hope the survivors of this girl who died as a result of that decision sue this police department to hell and back. It seems that losing huge amounts of money in court is the only thing that makes any police department give the slightest thought to the consequences of their hideous actions; to think they'll ever care what happens to any civilian they victimize is a pipedream. They don't and they won't ever care who or how many die as a direct result of their actions. They're used to operating above the law and getting away with murder. However, had this young woman had the courage and common sense to simply just say no to these cops in the first place she'd be alive today and that's the point everyone seems to be missing. Cops have learned that they can manipulate people through threats and intimidation but people do not have to let themselves be frightened into agreeing to set up -- to entrap -- other people for a reduced sentence. If everyone would simply take their case to a jury trial their sentences would be reduced the majority of the time, anyway, and it would sure slow the cops down in their over zealous enforcement of the laws they themselves break every day, yet simultaneously arrest people for breaking them because they can play both sides of the street and get by with it, making the "drug war" is a highly lucrative propostion for cops. The sooner people figure out that this is an unwinnable war against individual personal freedom taking away a decision that we all have the right to make for ourselves which should not ever have been criminalized in the first place the better off we all will be.

constitution

please stop using big words like constitution as if one really exist in this poor excuse for a country!

poor excuse for a country?

I know we have our problems in this country but you are lucky to live here. If you don't think so then get the fuck out. I will buy your ticket on the condition that you never return. Loser

poor excuse for a country?

Anonymous,

Perhaps YOU are the one who should leave, especially if you support the insanity of the war on drugs.

the drug war thats not working

I agree with you completly there a hundreds and thousands of non violent drug offenders in our prisons today, at a cost of around 40,000 per person per year.Can you imagian what good things we could do with all that money, But what would happen to the budget of tha largest criminal organization it the world, the DEA ? What would these criminals do whos property could they seize where would they get there funds? Would they turn to Oliver North, perhaps he could assist them with his expertise he has with the Cocaine Trade, (iran contra) who knows maby these animals woh have destroyed our constitution would have to get real jobs, who knows. But I sincerely hope the cops involved in killing this 23 old girl from FSU suffer an long painfull death prior to there journey to hell!

Unnecessary Tragedy

To Ms. Hoffman’s family and friends, please accept my deepest condolences and heartfelt regret for your loss. The pain and suffering Ms. Hoffman and you have been forced into by those sworn to protect us is inexcusable. This heinous and absolutely unnecessary tragedy will not be forgotten. There is no excuse for this. The shameful unfounded defense offered by the authorities attempting to shift the tragedy of their own incompetent actions to the victim is nothing short of reprehensible.

This story should outrage all of Florida and all the USA. Florida has some of the toughest drug laws in the country. I’ve seen our ridiculous drug policy cause tragedy, corruption, waste of resources, harm to citizens and society beyond imagination and once again needless death. There’s a growing movement to change this but we must all take action or tragedy will continue. Visit the site referenced below and get on their mailing list. Take civic actions that will make a difference when they notify you. Sending an email or making a phone call to your elected representatives can do more good than you might think. If not now, when? If not you, who? Enough is enough! “Just Say Know” is working on your behalf and they deserve your financial and civic action support. Just shaking your head and saying “that’s a shame” will not stop this.
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Billy Boy McCollum

Isn't it time, for McCollum to die alone & abused in one of Florida's fine Nursing Homes, yet? If not there is no justice.

money hell

police will not stop just because the city has to pay for this girls life .only the blood of those officers familys would pay that bill .if this happened to thier loved ones they would fight to end this crimnal conduct and this dispicable practice of using children as informants.

Achilles Heel

Because there is no complaining victim acting as a plaintiff in drug cases, informants are absolutely essential to the drug war.  Throw a monkey wrench into the informant system, and the drug war machine will grind to a halt much faster.

Unfortunately, the faltering U.S. economy is adding to the problem.  Snitching to earn some extra cash is going up. Note the 'gun bounty' in the NY Times article.

Giordano

I have said for some time....

Cops, especially the DEA could not have many "successes" if it were not for snitches. They know all the talk of leniency is B.S. but we all know that they can lie as long as they get what they want. I found out fist hand that a rat can fabricate most everything around a kernel of truth and as long as the cops get the arrest it does not matter if the warrant was based on lies. I have less than 2 months left of probation for indoor cultivation and my future is looking brighter. I have upcoming plans to speak at marijuana rallies and get more involved in the legalization effort. I am pleased to do my part. The snitch on the other hand has his name hanging out there everywhere. That is a life sentence. I am sure the law is continually in his face for more of the same as well. I hold my head up, do you think he can? My condolences to the Hoffman family. Take the bastards to court. Peace

www.pissedoffpothead.com

Rachel Hoffman

TYPICAL Florida BS!!! There is no state income tax in Florida. Instead they generate money by criminalizing their populace. Billboards advertising bailbondsmen are everywhere. Pages and pages of them in the phone book. Coincedence? Think the jails are full of hardened criminals? Think again. Although some DO belong there (Casey Anthony), things like jaywalking, riding a bicycle without a headlight, a father going across the street to tell his child to come home for a hurricane curfew (true story) will land you in the slammer in Florida. Then they’ve got you where they want you. Under the constant threat of incarceration, they “legally” extort large sums of money for fines, fees, classes, probation etc. And almost ALWAYS your probation will be violated so they can extort you twice for the same “crime”. Hence the saying: “Go to Florida on vacation, leave on probation, come back on a violation, stay the duration.” If you say anything about it they will smugly tell you that you should have known better than to break “the law”. Florida the sunshine state? HA! More like the cat box state–all sand and full of sh*t!!! YES, the cops should be arrested themselves for their inexcusable, deplorable conduct in this case--tantamount to depraved indifference to human life. And what about JEB BUSH’s CRACKHEAD daughter? I remember hearing about her getting caught trying to smuggle crack into her rehab facility in her shoe and the whole thing was hushed up and swept under the rug!

Lay the blame where it should be

The TPD is not at fault for Rachel Hoffman's death. Her and her murderers are to blame. Yes, the TPD asked her to be an informant. But they told her not to meet with the suspects on her own and she did it anyway. This is what got her killed. The police are not required to hold the informant's hand at all times or watch over them 24/7. Anyone who thinks that this is their job are really lacking in any common sense. I am very sorry that the parents are going through this right now. I couldn't imagine losing one of my children through any means. But the focus right now needs to be one the men who killed her and not demonizing the people protecting us.

Your post is pure idiocy!

In this case they were NOT protecting 'us'. A low lever pot user who sold to friends, how is that a threat to anyone except self righteous asshats. In this case the police were cowards and then tried to cover it up and justify putting this girl in mortal danger. Drug cops usually are nothing but cowards and sociopaths. Every officer involved needs to go to prison for a LONG time.

stupid people

low level pot user or not, she broke the law. whether you agree with the law or not, it is still the law.

you speed, you get a ticket and do not have a leg to stand on or complain about.

she got caught, atleast twice, breaking the law. no one is talking about that. she was a criminal, maybe not a hardened one, but one that was unrepentant and continued to break the law.

she continued her trend of not following the rules and that got her killed. had she followed the rules, a) she would not have been using illegal drugs in the first place and b) still be alive today.

the police should take a look at their policy and make adjustments but the people that are ultimately responsible for her death really are ms. hoffman and the drug dealers.

ihatesheep

yeah sheeple, we know.. All laws are good laws.

Just like they were in nazi Germany...

baahhhhhhhhh

There will come a day...

..when everyone involved in this young beautiful lady's death will have to answer to a higher power. The death of this young lady was cause by the ingorance of the 1930's. I hope the TPD officers involved sleep well at night. Is the worth of a person life only equivalent to the value of a bag of pot..please.

For those of you...

bashing RACHEL, regardless of your opinion, should stop to think that "this girl", "she", "her", was a daughter, a friend, and meant something to a lot of people. She was RACHEL. Not an informant, a druggie, or any of the other repugnant names society has given her. What if this had been your daughter? Your sister? Your friend? I guarantee you wouldn't be saying that she ultimately caused her own death. You would be seeking justice and trying to figure out why someone in trouble for one level of crime would have to take the elevator all the way to the top, where the big time drug dealers are, just to plummet all the way to the pit.

I am not saying she was right or wrong. I am not saying any of you are right or wrong. I am simply saying this is not for you (nor I) to decide. Leave it to the judge. Stay out of it. Have some respect for her, her family, and the others in mourning and keep your ill-mannered, unpolished opinions to yourself. Yes, this is a blog and you are entitled to your posts, but for those of you aristocrats who claim to be so educated, worthy, and sterling: If you indeed were as you claim to be, you would have the morals, propriety, knowledge and respect to know when your opinions should be voiced and when your discourteous mouths should stay closed.

Let her loved ones mourn and not have to worry about crude people slandering RACHEL, someone they did not know personally, only politically and quite frankly through Newspapers and Court Releases. GET A GRIP.

Okay then, RACHEL was a

Okay then, RACHEL was a criminal who broke the law several times. Apparently her first arrest did not deter her from selling. So, is it now the police department's fault that she used pot, ecstasy and Valium, and sold it? Let's put blame where it belongs.. on Rachel. Ultimately, it was her continuing criminal behavior that put her in harm's way, not the police. I would never be asked to be a police informant or make a drug buy, because I not a CRIMINAL! Case closed. Too bad, but she put herself in that situation. She was no young innocent. And for you misinformed people who think drug users are non-violent offenders, I am here to bear witness to all if the assaulted, beaten and broken into homes' victims of "non-violent" drug offenders who are looking for a quick buck got their next fix. Keep them all locked up and build more jails.

While I'll be crucified for

While I'll be crucified for this I will preface with that her death was a tragedy which could have been prevented. What no one wants to look at (or address) as it is an emotional issue is the fact that while TPD may have dropped the ball in some respects, the CI bears a measure of responsibility for her own death. First, she was a drug dealer selling between 10 and 15 POUNDs of weed a week. Now, drug dealing is dangerous and it really doesn't matter if you are doing it for your own profit or for the cops, bad things can happen. You can get robbed, beat up, arrested or even killed. Those are the risks you sign on for. Common sense would tell you that if you are working as an informant, KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT! don't tell all your friends (who then tell all their friends..and so on). And follow instructions. don't move the deal, keep communications with your control. TPD has a share of the blame, but lets not make her out to be a model citizen

THOSE COPS WILL NOT STOP MURDERING CHILDREN

UNTIL THEY ARE___________ YOU FILL IN THE BLANK .PEOPLE YOU KNOW WHAT MUST BE DONE

Lurking in the Shadows

PEOPLE ASK ME WHAT I SAY TO A DEAD COPS WIFE

COPS KILL PEOPLE EVERYDAY

THAT'S LIFE

Lurking in the Shadows comment

That's kinda Chicken $#*@ to say that.

Unnecessary Death

My GOD!!! How can anyone say ANYTHING bad about Rachel? She's DEAD!! DAMN!!!! I don't even know her, like the many speaking here. I just learned about this case moments ago, and I am floored with reading all of the negetivity. Yes she broke the "law". Yes cannibis is illegal. But to come right out and imply that she somehow deserved to be dead is, in my mind, unfathomable. I can only hope that, first of all, the people that murdered her are brought to justice where "bubba" can have their way with them in the prison system. Secondly I hope that carma will see itself around to a day where the officers who are responsible for this unconscionable act will be laying somewhere, like Rachel, slowly bleeding out as they contemplate thier miserable lives. And also, I hope that the people spewing forth the negativity will have kids or loved ones taken from them as well to see what it's like to feel this deep, deep pain that this girls family and friends must feel.
There have been billions of dollars spend on the war on drugs, but drugs are just as easy to come accross as ever. Cannibis is a plant. Not a synthesized drug like cocaine, crack or heroin. If legalized an taxed, states could reap the billions instead of the drug gangs.
It sounds like Rachel was selling to her circle of friends. It doesn't seem as though she was truely a criminal type.
My thoughts and prayers go out to her family...

Murder in my book

Them selfish ambitious law enforcement officials need to be charged with murder of that young girl.They put her in a highly dangerous life and death situation.I don't care if she was selling some pot,that's beside the point.They killed her plain and simple.If any parent was to put their child in that situation they would be charged with wreckless endangerment or some other similar law.They fricking murdered that poor girl.She had no experience what so ever in some thing of that magnitude.Lock them up and throw away the key let the system have their way with them,see how they like it to be treated as a criminal just as they really are.They are totally,totally responsible for her death with out a doubt.Over some pot,how ridiculous is that.Send her in to do their dirty work cuz they are to chicken and not man or woman enough to do their own fricking job.Oh man this really upsets me to think what cowards they really are,they proved it!!!!!..RIP Rachel God bless her family and friends..And God bless her for the courage she showed in trying to do their dirty work.
I would like to know how things turned out with the chicken Sh_t bast___rds who set her up and the two other criminals she was sent to set up?

Interesting

Saw this story on late night TV. Being from O/S, I find it rather amusing that there is a real life Chief Wiggum around.
What I found astounding was this:
1) That the girl didn't ask for a lawyer, she could've asked for one without her parents knowing
2) No one high up saw that there was a problem sending a naive, drug dependent woman into a high risk situation
3) The case seems a little bit clean and easy. A nice girls gets murdered, the police convenient looses sight of her and suddenly two men of another ethnicity is caught.
Put two and two together?

Even I was surprised to the

Even I was surprised to the reaction of his at the death. I would have not known about it if this site had not updated about it. Anyways thanks a lot for the update. I would have remained unaware if I had not read this.

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