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ACLU Questions Police Agencies About Militarization

March 06, 2013  | 

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) will launch a nationwide campaign to assess police militarization in the United States Wednesday, when ACLU affiliates in 23 states send open records requests to hundreds of state and local police agencies.

The ACLU will request information about SWAT teams, such as how often and for what reasons they're deployed, what types of weapons they use, how often citizens are injured during SWAT raids, and how they're funded.

The affiliates will also ask for information about drones, GPS tracking devices, how much military equipment the police agencies have obtained through programs run through the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security, and how often and for what purpose state National Guards are participating in enforcement of drug laws.

"We've known for a while now that American neighborhoods are increasingly being policed by cops armed with the weapons and tactics of war," Kara Dansky, senior counsel at the ACLU's Center for Justice, told the Huffington Post. "The aim of this investigation is to find out just how pervasive this is, and to what extent federal funding is incentivizing this trend."

Tags: ACLU Activism, SWAT Tactics, Unmanned Aircraft, GPS, Search and Seizure


Comments (15)

Displaying 1 - 15 of 15

rob @ 3/6/2013 12:18 PM

Are they investigating the thugs, cartels and gang bangers use of weapons as well? Swat is used to confront these criminals as safely as possible. Nothing good comes from this "organization".

RyanNREMTP @ 3/6/2013 1:49 PM

Ours won't be too hard to fill out. We use rubber band guns, water balloons and is funded by Monopoly.

Jake @ 3/7/2013 5:43 PM

Due to budget cuts, we lost air ops for approx 1 year. Unmanned aircraft, drones,...WTH. I work in what i would consider a major metropolitan area: just under 1/2 million. I am a patrol officer. I am not assigned a cell phone. The paint on many of our patrol cars is peeling off. Is "incentivizing" even a word? Kara, You are too intelligent for your own good. Whatever happened to the 15th Natural Law of man, "That all men that mediate peace, be allowed safe conduct"

Lt Dan @ 3/7/2013 6:03 PM

If the ACLU wants to "investigate" they should start with the most anonymous (more removed from local citizen scutiny) and largest agencies with access to military hardware.....the Obama Administration.

Ofc Pyatt @ 3/7/2013 8:02 PM

Typical ACLU, attack and disarm the good guys through dirty tactics !!

Bob@Az. @ 3/7/2013 8:27 PM

Maybe some Dept. should take Kara on a few operations in "American neighborhoods" so she can see that it is a "war". And the Police are still underarmed! How many squads have full auto HKs and Uzis at their disposal? Better yet, take her down to one of our "Safer then it's ever been" border areas and let her see what "War" is all about.
Blues, Stay Safe and watch out for the ACLU idiots.

dustin @ 3/7/2013 9:14 PM

Hey Kara, they are funded often by the thugs you call "clients". Nuff said.

Trigger @ 3/8/2013 5:24 AM

Kara who do you and your family and other ACLU groupies call when you need help? When all hell is breaking loose, when some dirt bag kicks in your door sticks a gun in your face and rapes your ass. When the local gang bangers are shooting up the neighborhoods and the meth heads are stealing your stuff to support their habit. On never mind you probably live in a gated condo community with its own security force and peace loving squirrels. Enjoy your day.

Capt. Crunch @ 3/8/2013 4:06 PM

Do you realize every time the ACLU wins a case it costs us tax payers money. Lets save money and get rid of the ACLU.

IndyTrnr @ 3/8/2013 5:33 PM

The ACLU in my opinion a four letter word. They need to crawl back under the rock from where they came!!!! As said before, nothing good will come of this.

Jim VG @ 3/10/2013 12:36 PM

Has the American Communist Lawyers Union ever done ANYTHING constructive or made ANY positive contribution to American Law Enforcement or American life? ......... Never Mind.

NOFXican83 @ 3/13/2013 7:11 PM

I can't wait to see what they find. I am sure they will complete an unbiased and thorough investigation, as they usually do. ( sarcasm: the use of irony to mock or convey contempt)

Dan B @ 3/15/2013 6:58 AM

Fact remains: some of the information mentioned in the article can be shown to be critical operational information to the point units won't be forced to give it up.

JayBird @ 3/17/2013 1:57 PM

Every time a cop busts someone, it costs us taxpayers money. Let's get rid of them all. They are a waste of tax payer money (not sarcasm)

claywatson @ 4/10/2014 12:09 AM

A year later, Ogden Police Deputy Director John Harvey (retired from Memphis/Shelby County) challenged the accuracy of her (ACLU) military terminology.
http://www.standard.net/stories/2014/04/09/civil-rights-advocates-ogden-police-official-debate-tactics

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