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Armed and Safe is a gun rights advocacy blog, with the mission of debunking the "logic" of the enemies of the Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms.

I can be reached at 45superman@gmail.com.You can follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/45superman.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Woman 'caught' . . . doing nothing illegal (aside from tailgating)

From Texas, we hear of a woman pulled over for tailgating. The Sheriff's Office corporal who pulled her over apparently found her behavior suspicious, and decided to have his drug sniffing police dog partner check her vehicle.

Right away, the dog found . . . no drugs.

The woman was shaking and started telling Kirkpatrick a story that didn’t make sense, he said. The woman wouldn’t let Kirkpatrick search her car, so he got the help of his partner Rocky, a 4-year-old Belgian malinois police dog.

Rocky smelled something near the back door of the SUV, O’Connor said. When Kirkpatrick looked inside, he found duffel bags filled with parts of AR-15s, 200 rounds of .50-caliber ammunition, 40 magazines and a bullet-proof vest that can stop assault-rifle bullets.

Rocky isn’t trained to sniff for weapons, Kirkpatrick said, so the guns were likely covered with residue from drugs. No drugs were found in the vehicle.
Of course, if people are to be held responsible for anything they might be transporting that has "drug residue" on it, we had all better stop carrying cash in denominations larger than $10 bills (and I'm not sure that would be small enough to avoid the danger of being inadvertently caught with "drug residue").
There’s not an outright ban on anything found inside the car, [Victoria County Sheriff Michael T.] O’Connor said. Deputies questioned the woman, but she wasn’t arrested. Her name was not released because she’s being investigated.
Not an "outright ban," and presumably, not a "conditional ban," either. In other words, there is no evidence that she was committing any crime more serious than tailgating.

The wise sheriff has other thoughts, though.
Sheriff T. Michael O’Connor suspects the assortment of rifle parts and ammunition was headed to Mexico and could be used by drug cartels, he said.

“I don’t regard this as a hunting trip,” O’Connor said as he stood behind three tables loaded with guns and ammo Monday afternoon. “We felt that this was a significant find.”
However the Sheriff "regards" what the woman was doing, there is exactly ZERO legal requirement for hunting to have had anything to do with it, and however the Sheriff's department "felt" about the find, if there's no evidence of a crime having been committed, they have no legitimate authority to detain either the woman or her property.

I'm not saying that the Sheriff is necessarily wrong in his theory about what the woman was up to, but are we "innocent until proven guilty," or not?

10 comments:

Crotalus said...

"Innocent until proven guilty" has been gone for a long time now, and the Patriot Act made it worse. Everyone is now a suspect until he's proven innocent, which is a legal impossibility, so I'm told.

45superman said...

"Innocent until proven guilty" has been gone for a long time now . . .

That can't be right--they even say it during the theme music for "COPS" ;-).

the texan said...

Good thing she didn't have her kids in the car or they would have taken them too.

45superman said...

Actually, although I didn't mention it, she did have her 8-year-old son along.

Melancton Smith said...

a bullet-proof vest that can stop assault-rifle bullets

I want one of those! Too bad cops can't get those...

I don't see how one could leap to the conclusion that she was up to anything nefarious.

Even so, sounds like she didn't even have a working gun. Did the AR15 parts include an upper that worked with the .50 cal bullets she had?

Sounds like someone driving back from picking up misc items at a gun show.

straightarrow said...

Until they can teach these dogs to testify in open court I am disinclined to believe they aren't trained to alert on bumpers or motor oil.

But to the issue, I am far more fearful of my liberty by the unfettered actions of our "minders" than by any thing this woman could Possibly have been up to.

The_Chef said...

Welcome to the New Amerika Comrades!

Here is your ID number. And remember, should you be suspected of anything, we will punish.

/*sigh* express elevator to hell anyone?

Bushwack said...

This might ruffle a few feathers but "duffel bags filled with parts of AR-15s, 200 rounds of .50-caliber ammunition, 40 magazines and a bullet-proof vest that can stop assault-rifle bullets." SHOULD be enough reason to ask about, and depending on the answer INVESTIGATED.

IF you or I were hauling that stuff around, cop finds them and we say "We are headed to a gun show in Austin and it was true, no worries. Now this woman, with her kid in the car, if she were sweating profusely and stuttering for answers I am not going to blame L.E for investigating a bit... Just an opinion.

45superman said...

Bushwack, the woman owes the thugs nothing in the way of an explanation. She is 100% within her rights to drive all over Texas with duffel bags full of AR-15 parts, magazines, ammunition, and body armor. She is also within her rights to be nervous when stopped and interrogated by the gendarme.

No evidence of a crime, therefore nothing to "investigate."

Anonymous said...

I have a few free thoughts on this, and they are worth what you paid for them: These were ONLY gun PARTS, that “Might be going to Mexico” or they could be going to Canada. Bottom line: she wasn’t trying to cross either border with these parts, the parts and all other items are legal to own where she was stopped, to my knowledge with no limits on the numbers of said part one is allowed to own = NO CRIME, NO REASON TO HARASS, uh, I mean “investigate”. The officer’s intentions MAY have been to stop and rape both the woman and child: he HAD “the necessary equipment present at the time of the encounter”; that doesn’t make him guilty, does it? We are increasingly allowing OUR SERVANTS to get away with more and more urine-deficient practices, which in turn is allowing law enforcement to act in a careless and in many cases deadly manner. (Cops kick in the wrong door, or hit a house they don’t have a warrant to raid: Do they go to prison for B&E? No. They commit MURDER during one of their ILLEGAL B&E’s, do they get charged? No. WHY NOT? The “They were just doing their job” defense wasn’t good enough during the Nuremberg Trials).
As for police dogs “alerting”: I’ve trained no less than two dozen horses and dogs to “alert” to the pineapple (or whatever else I wanted to CLAIM) you “must have in your pocket”, as a pet trick routine. What I find unbelievable, is that an organization that can afford to pay $8,000-$38,000 for a “specially trained” dog, CAN’T have the same “pet trick” taught to these “highly trained” animals. If I can train a horse to “alert” by a secret signal: why CAN’T law enforcement do the same?
You say: “can’t do it!”? For 25% of one of these dogs’ training and purchase price, I will train it to “alert” whenever to whatever you “silent signal” for it to “alert”.
No, it’s not more difficult than the “regular” LEO dog training; they will use it to make a lot of money, I would only be getting a tiny percentage for my efforts.