Baptist Pastor Assaulted After Refusing Police Search


Cross-posted from Flex Your Rights

This story has been circulating around the web and is generating some media attention as well:



Obviously, this is a deeply troubling example of a worst-case outcome for a citizen who asserted constitutional rights during a police encounter. Given that our mission is to help people understand and assert these rights, we regret that events like this happen as often as they do.

Fortunately, the internet itself has become a useful tool not only for educating the public about their rights, but also for exposing police who violate the constitutional rights of the people they're supposed to protect. Some might say Steven Anderson's experience is an example of how police just do whatever they want. Yet Steven Anderson is exactly the type of brave citizen whose decision to assert his rights could ultimately have a meaningful impact.

It is precisely because too many police officers continue to recklessly disregard the basic rights of innocent people that we must make sure all citizens have the tools to confidently assert their rights if and when they feel compelled to do so. This incident will likely culminate in a high-profile lawsuit that could change the way similar situations are handled in the future. If it weren't for Anderson's decision to flex his rights, there's no question that the officers he encountered would be out there right now abusing other people, instead of being investigated for civil rights violations.

Protecting Yourself at Police Checkpoints

Inside-the-border checkpoints like the one Anderson encountered are dubious in their legality and rely heavily on coercion. Although you are not technically obligated to answer any questions or agree to a search, officers will generally expect you to comply and will usually become aggressive if you don’t cooperate. If you choose to flex your rights in this situation, do so politely and don't be surprised if the situation escalates.

If officers ask to search your vehicle and you refuse, they can legally conduct a dog-sniff of the outside of your vehicle (provided that a dog is present at the scene). If the dog indicates that there is contraband in your vehicle, that creates probable cause for officers to conduct a search. Unfortunately, officers sometimes falsely claim that the dog has detected contraband so that they can perform a search legally. In this situation, state clearly that you don't agree to the search, but do not resist. You can challenge the search later.

If you feel that your rights were violated, don't say anything to the officers. Write everything down as soon as possible and contact an attorney. Click here for more on responding to police misconduct.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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Distrubing on so many levels.

Chilling. This underlines how bad things have gotten. God, if this guy had been black he probably would have been shot.

Times sure are changing for

Times sure are changing for the worse.

White male America trusts cops

It's true. White male America still mostly trusts cops. It's a hold-over from a different time, before we'd asked them to be inhuman.

Now white males can know what black males have known for 150 years.

The enforcement of bad laws is incredibly destructive.

except for the idiots commenting on the az article

Did you check out the link to the article and the comment section...Nearly every comment is stuff like "if you have nothing to hide, you should just let them search you, otherwise you deserve to be beaten"..."this guy was asking for it cause he just wanted to get on you tube"..."he had other past run-ins with the cops so it serves him right"

wow. just wow.

I hope each and every one of those commenters gets stopped at a checkpoint and has done to them what this guy went through...or maybe they need some cop to plant a bag of weed on them before they realize that cops lie and make up false evidence and false reason for "probably cause". No wonder this country is f-ed up beyond belief. It's all these blind idiot sheep living here, and I'll be damned if their ignorance and willingness to lick some authoritarian leader's balls is going to force the rest to put up with this type of bull$hit: corrupt cops, tasers for no reason, beatings by border patrol people, the largest prison population on the planet. etc. etc.

God these people are stupid...I'm just fuming from reading these comments...just go read them...you'll see

Oh brother

It's truly amazing that every time something completely absurd happens to a white man that there's an automatic comparrison to what happened to a black man.

It's 2009. Get over it already. It's over. It's past. We're all a smarter and more educated country well shed of the ignorance of that time. It's not like you are owed a debt for something that may not have even happened to you specifically. Stop making the comparrisons that open the door to MORE hate and discontent.

Even if it was done to someone you know and love, guess what? Something equally horrid and obscene was done to someone else you know and love of a different color. Either come together as a country should or be welcome to pack your negativity and be gone. There's enough people just waiting to get in and they may even be a little more supportive of this country as a WHOLE than you are in highlighting the bad parts of the past.

The most corrupt police

The most corrupt police force that I have seen is in Manhattan, Riley County Kansas. They are without a doubt the worst. They do what they want without warrants or probable cause and test-a-lie in court on a regular basis. They are a money making machine for the county and because it is a college town there is no end to the college students they can bust and they bust hundreds yearly. They have some really ignorant gung ho cops. Surprise! almost all of the cops are white and most of them also violate the rights of the people they're supposed to protect. It has been this way for years and years. They aren't heros and aren't to be trusted

jamesthompson23's picture

Haha

"God, if this guy had been black he probably would have been shot."

^ I actually lol'd at that statement.

This is a bad case of too much force being used, but what irks me the most, if this guy just comes off as an ass to me. They did kind of try to bait him, by saying the dog was the one that smelled something, but all he had to do was say one word, they search, and he gets to leave. What's so hard abou tthat?

Re: "What's so hard abou tthat?"

"this guy just comes off as an ass to me."

Yeah, this guy is real ass for standing up for himself and not letting those thugs with badges search his car and private belongings.

Exactly! They had no right

Exactly! They had no right to search his car, and he informed them that he wouldn't have his 4th Amendment rights violated. No warrant. Simple as that. And the dog certainly didn't give the LEOs probable cause. What do dogs do to alert their handlers? They should bark, right? They should get excited, right? Was this the magic dog they trained to wink when he smelled drugs or was his handler simply an animal psychic?

FREEDOM AND LIBERTY

SINCE YOU ARE ONE OF THE SHEEPLE WILLING TO LIVE IN A POLICE STATE, I SUGGEST YOU GO LIVE IN ONE, NOT TRY AND MAKE ONE OUT OF MY COUNTRY. I AM AN AMERICAN PATRIOT AND WILL LIVE FREE, IN WILLING COMPLIANCE WITH ALL LAWS THAT DO NOT VIOLATE GOD-GIVEN HUMAN FREEDOM AND LIBERTY AS ACKNOWLEDGED IN THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. IF YOU DO NOT SAY OR DO ANYTHING WHEN THEY COME FOR YOUR NEIGHBOR, IT IS ONLY A MATTER OF TIME UNTIL THEY COME FOR YOU TOO.

Gee... what IS so hard about giving up your rights?

Helpful hint for you:

Give up a little of your rights and you open the gate to have the rest removed FOR you.

Most of my family is law enforcement and even I would have said NO to the search because it was BULL!

This is appauling!!!!

This just make me sick to my stomach!!!!
"James", I have a comment for you....it's not about "What's so hard about that" it's about he was TOTALLY doing everything within his legal rights.
If they pulled you over and wanted to do a strip search (I mean what's so hard about that?) would you just let them, and then go on your merry little way?
The reason you find the comment about "if he had been black" so humorous, is you know it could very likely happen. Is that funny?
I know that it stretching it...but my God if you are committing NO crime, they have NO right to abuse you like that!!! After hearing all of this...who knows, the strip search could be just around that that corner!!! If what he had just said "search" and they didn't find anything? Who knows they might have gone for the "strip search" or more.
It sounds like they were determined to get this kid for some reason.
And EVEN if you come off as an unpleasant person (which I do see that at all in this clip) they still do NOT have the right to do what they did!!!

Every single person in this county has rights.(even you) That is what our forefather fought for. That is what we still fight for today. You make a mockery of that!!!
This is not a case of "too much force being used" this is a case where NO force should have been used!!!
And James...you better really be a good driver honey. Heaven forbid you go through any "border patrol checks. With your attitude, oh I hate to think what they might do to you...
Good luck Scott, I'm so very sorry this happened to you. Please follow up and let us know how you do.
Sincerely.....Teresa

re "ha, ha"

Aside from anything else, you're assuming the cops are trustworthy. Well, maybe they were, but why risk your freedom to find out if they are or not? Too many stories of bad cops out there, and even good cops, as a general rule, will not act to protect the public from bad cops.

Your presumed "rights" have....

...left the building, with the Supreme Courts approval . If you stand up for your presumed rights the police will knock you down. The police know they are presently untouchable.This is the future of this so-called democracy. ..until we stand in unison.

LAND OF THE FREE, HOME OF THE BRAVE

THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU GIVE GUNS AND BADGES TO COWARDS, OVERSEEN BY FAILED LEADERSHIP, TRYING TO ENFORCE LAWS THAT VIOLATE THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.
NO CITIZEN SHOULD BE TREATED THIS WAY, INNOCENT OR GUILTY.
THE GOOD NEWS IS THAT IF THE IDIOTS GET FIRED, THEY CAN STILL GET GET WORK. THEY CAN JUST GO JOIN THE TALIBAN AND CONTINUE DOING WHAT THEY DO BEST: THE SAME THINGS, THE SAME WAYS, FOR THE SAME KINDS OF PEOPLE, FOR THE SAME REASONS.
I HOPE THIS ENDS UP COSTING THE MORONS AND THEIR ILK THEIR JOBS AND LOTS AND LOTS OF MONEY.

How Ironic!!

Wake Up America why is this happening? I'll tell you why! In large part because of the religious temperance movement!!!!! God gave us a free will and religious nuts thru big Government took that away with prohibition versions 1.0 & now 2.0!!! Smoke That!!!! J. Velasco Brownsville TX

READ THE BIBLE

IF RELIGIOUS FANATICS WOULD READ THE BIBLE THEY WOULD LEARN THAT "JUDGE NOT LEST YE BE JUDGED" MEANS MIND YOUR OWN F***ING BUSINESS.

Judge not?

What would they be judging? There is no prohibition of alcohol or other drugs in the Bible. So, no judgment should be occurring, anyway! The prohibition of cannabis was made in the Catholic religion by some pope named Innocent, back in the 1400's. It had nothing to do with the Bible. As people point out, the only prohibition given by God (to Adam and Eve) did not work because He gave us all a free will! They still ate the fruit!

And we all know how well alcohol prohibition worked!

An interesting addition to your quote, might I include the next line in the scripture? What is says is that what judgment a person gives to another will be given right back to him. And, as you point out, I should not be judging my brother. The judgment I want is mercy from God. I guess that means I have to be merciful to my brother (that means everybody)!

You could also use a little more tact, if you want to quote scripture. Your use of vulgar language could be seen as offensive. And what do you want to accomplish? Make people mad, or allow them to see their mistakes? And believe it or not, the abolition of drug prohibition is also (some of ) "our" business!

Something amiss

What's the charge?

The Police State is Official...and Threatened

In these hard economic times, where we are told "your job is your greatest asset", we should not be surprised that police, border patrol, DEA, and the like feel even more threatened. As more people flex their rights, events of this nature will increase. As much as it pains me to say it, we may have to get used to traveling in numbers, because obviously when it comes to a police man--or (better?) police dog, we have seen how this is always taken as more true than the words of the accused.

For our movement to continue to progress, we must pick our battles wisely. Challenge illegal road blocks and searches when your are with friends or relatives who can help vouch for, or even protect you when you do, not when you are alone. At those times, bite your tongue and play their silly game. It will not go on much longer. Oppressions such as the marijuana prohibition usually get worse at the end.

I feel for this brother, but I don't need anything more to fire me up about this issue: a half-century old government-run, Nazi persecution of people who do no harm to anyone else.

We should be ashamed what we have allowed happen to our nation and the Constitution on which it is based.

And for the moron above. We can't kiss the ass of George Washington's worst horse, Thomas Paine's vomit had more courage than we do, and Thomas Jefferson, who passed many fine days smoking hemp on his porch, warned us about this very sort of McCarthyish witch-trial eventual threats to the freedoms we established, so much a part of society today that people cannot understand why they should be offended even if they "have nothing to hide."

The Prohibition of Marijuana is a symbol of the dishonesty in politics, science, medicine, and law. This should be enough for any sane person to be convinced of its lunacy.

Angelo Caiazzo

Here's an encounter that he got on tape

This incident ended up much better for pastor Anderson:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFS7oZtE8Ks&feature=related

Welcome to the Youtube Movement to Monitor Law Enforcement

Right on!

This guy is on a mission to

This guy is on a mission to put things in perspective for all of us (cops as well as ordinary citizens) about what our rights are under the constitution vs what they are in the real world. I very much respect him for doing this and hope he can wake many people up.

Goin to Mexico

He didn't cross the border.

He was perfectly well within his right to refuse the search.

It would have been easier to just let the psychos search the car. But, he chose to invoke his rights. (That's what they are there for afterall.)

Not all cops are bad. Not all border patrol officers are idiots. Just as not every baptist preacher has been beaten by one of the aforementioned individuals. All it takes is the first time on tape for it to make others bitch about it. But, I guess even a delayed reaction is still a reaction.

Plain and simple fact is that our rights are being systematically removed little by little each and every single day by the actions of those who wish to harm the US and by the passive submission of her people who allow it. There used to be a time when.... (finish the sentence any way you like and you'll see something that you can't do anymore as a direct government reaction to what someone outside the American population has done or threatened to do).

So go ahead. Swallow your objections a little harder without standing up with your fellow countrymen. Eventually you'll choke or starve on the lack of freedom that we have in this country. Don't make the waves necessary to wash out the wrong and you'll drown right along with the rest.

But... maybe it's for the best anyway.

If you don't want your rights then I certainly see no reason for another tour in Iraq. I think I'll just go to Mexico for a little while.... drink a little... stuff a mannequin in the trunk of my car and drive through the border patrol....

Yep...

anybody that is a body

anybody that is a body language expert can see this guy is lying through his teeth. Why didn't he just answer the question? he brought this all on himself. Seems he is looking for a payday and sorry it won't happen. Just another liberal that is trying to fight the new az law!!!!

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