Late last month we reported about strange incidents coming to light suggesting a pattern regarding police officers. It seemed that Louisiana police were forcing innocent citizens into giving blood and saliva samples after pulling them over. Well the trend seems to be a bit larger than just Louisiana, as reports are coming in showing the trend spreading to at least, “60 communities across the nation and shows no signs of stopping.”
According to a Louisiana law fittingly titled the “no refusal” policy police officers were allowed to take your blood even if they had only the suspicion you were under the influence of alcohol. If you happened to deny officers from taking that sample, they would throw you in the clink until they were granted a court order to forcefully take it from you.
Well, the federal program run by the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation that began in Texas, is spreading across the country. According to the institute however, the program is strictly voluntary.
People are beginning to wonder how when armed police officers force you to pull over is considered voluntary. Apparently the officers then want three things from you; a breath test, a saliva sample, and a blood sample. If you decline, officers are prepared to offer you money as a bribe.
One woman stated that she was offered $10 for her saliva and $50 for her blood sample after declining officer’s requests. Other reports have stated that innocent citizens were offered upwards of $100 to give up their DNA. In an economy like this, sometimes $100 can be the difference between your family eating or not.
As if pulling the innocent citizens over wasn’t enough of a violation of their fourth amendment rights, the officers are known to have already been testing your breath for your alcohol content levels. Through the technical capabilities of a new device, officers now have flashlights equipped with breathalyzers right in them. So when they shove their flashlight in your face, you’re already being tested without knowing it.
According to Frank Colosi, an attorney, “They’re essentially lying to you when they say it’s ‘completely voluntary,’ because they’re testing you at that moment.”
Is this considered voluntary–testing unknowing citizens without the suspicion of any wrong doing?
Either way the “voluntary” tests are causing quite a bit of controversy as legal teams jump on the fight against the violation of rights.
Rory Ellinger, an attorney and representative in University City states that, “To the average person, all the authority and prosecutorial demeanor of an officer directing you to pull over amounts to an order, [is] not a voluntary act.” And Susan Watson, an ACLU executive director asks, “How voluntary is it when you have a police officer in uniform flagging you down? Are you going to stop? Yes, you’re going to stop.”
Other citizens are claiming that they gave up samples so they wouldn’t be chased down and arrested. Kim Cope stated that in order just to get the officers to leave her alone, she allowed the men to violate her rights and participated in a breathalyzer test. Another driver, Carl Olund, said that he only let the officers take his saliva out of the fear that if he did not, “4 or 5 cops,” would have chased him down.
It seems as though the government is trying to coerce the American people into supplying their blood and saliva for an extremely illegal DNA database. What will you do when pulled over by police with this request?