SSCC #510 : Oakland County

Oakland County prosecutors have dropped 16 drug cases in recent months — including one involving a large-scale marijuana bust — after an investigation determined a deputy on the county’s narcotics enforcement team falsified a search warrant and lied under oath.

County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper said she learned in September that Marc Ferguson, now fired, opened a shipping container at YRC Freight in Pontiac without a search warrant in June 2011. He discovered 78 pounds of marijuana with a street value of $300,000.

He has been fired, however I think that was more because of the fact his actions and getting caught compromised hundreds of cases.  No word on him being charged for violating peoples rights, and more importantly though as usual:

Ferguson was fired in December, following an internal investigation by the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office. He has filed a grievance to get his job back.

I’m reasonably sure he will get his job back, Officer Roid Rage did.

State Sponsored Criminal #510: Marc Ferguson

Because when you violate someone’s rights being held accountable becomes a relative term when you’re a cop.

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.

He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.

Quote of the Day – Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson(1/26/2013)

Had this protest been launched somewhere other than in the security-screening area, we would have a much different case. But Tobey’s antics diverted defendants from their passenger-screening duties for a period, a diversion that nefarious actors could have exploited to dangerous effect. Defendants responded as any passenger would hope they would, summoning local law enforcement to remove Tobey—and the distraction he was creating — from the scene.

Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson – Aaron Tobey v Terri Jones

January 25, 2013


[First here's the background on the story.

A Virginia man who wrote an abbreviated version of the Fourth Amendment on his body and stripped to his shorts at an airport security screening area won a trial Friday in his lawsuit seeking $250,000 in damages for being detained on a disorderly conduct charge.

Now let me translate Judge Wilkinson's quote for everyone.

Because our TSA agents and federal government so dislike those who disagree with the government infringing on personal liberties and freedom.  People should no longer have 1st Amendment protections to their ability peacefully protest the behavior of the agents infringing on their 4th Amendment rights.

The fact that our paid government agents would pursue and harass a man for an extra 90 minutes because he was willing to protest is evidence he should not be allowed to voice dissent.  The reason he shouldn't be allowed is because it compounds the ignorance and inability for the TSA to do its job thus making it more likely that an agency who has a track record of catching absolutely no-one to catch even fewer.

Instead the people should just silently undergo their mistreatment and act like good cattle and just get on the cattle car to the slaughter.  That way the TSA can continue stealing peoples private valuables to sell to others while under the protecting folds of working for the US Government.

Still think this whole thing is still really about making us safer?  The government does nothing but destroy and trample the rights and liberties of some to make others somehow feel they are safer.  When in fact the TSA guy just waves terrorists right on through because it's merely an illusion and nothing more.

Just remember, Judge Wilkinson obviously despises the 1st Amendment as much as he despises the 4th Amendment.  Thankfully his opinion was the dissenting one.  -B]

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.

He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.

Quote of the Day – Jennifer (1/25/2013)

There is one thing and one thing only that has proven time and time again to stop someone bent on violence. A gun. And I promise you that no amount of gun control legislation will ever eliminate them, it will just change who has access to them.  The thing you need in that moment where the law has already failed you, will only be accessible to criminals and representatives of the government (some overlap). Or do you really believe the criminals will just turn them in? Even if they did, that doesn’t really offer me a whole lot of comfort if I am staring down a 266lb criminal (the observant among you have already noticed that is twice my weight; a big guy, but not freakishly so). My husband is nowhere near that size, but he could easily overpower me physically.

JenniferIn Is Not Gun Control; It Is Citizen Disarmament
January 24, 2013


[And that folks is the meat and potatoes of this debate. Criminals don't obey the laws, and in a just world we wouldn't even need laws. But we live in reality. The reality is that the laws work to constrain those who are good, while benefiting criminals who don't care about the law as it is.

Anyone who cannot seem to understand this basic fact is disregarding how the law works.  They wish to do nothing more than criminalize those with opinions they disagree with.  They wish to criminalize those who would willingly defend themselves as others would wish to criminalize gay marriage or criminalize interracial couples.

Criminalizing those who have no ill intent towards society serves no purpose other than to quell dissent and remove those from society that you would disagree with.

And that my friends is their end game, even if it means sending us to camps in box cars, those who would take our arms have no problem doing that if that's what it takes. -B]

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.

He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.

Some Historical Context…

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Most would say that’s just your standard political ploy… And they would be right, mastered through the ages by previous despots.

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How important is this principal for this type of political game?  It’s so important that Hitler inscribed it in Mein Kampf:

“The state must declare the child to be the most precious treasure of the people.”

-Mein Kampf, Adolf Hitler, Publ. Houghton Miflin, 1943, Page 403

While what we have heard today so far on the executive order is by no means life shattering, we must remain ever vigilant as this is by no means a guarantee we’re out of the woods.  Doubly so since he pointed to congress to do more.

As Joe said yesterday, you should be afraid and the hair should be standing up on the back of your neck.

As a buddy of mine said:

The Taliban aren’t the only people who use human shields.

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.

He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.

A Response from a Representative…

So as mentioned previously my wife sent a pretty direct letter to our federal representatives.  Patty Murray responded today.

Dear Mrs. Barnett:

Thank you for contacting me regarding your thoughts on new gun control legislation. I appreciate having the benefit of your views on this matter.

The views of Washingtonians are very important to my work. I will keep your thoughts in mind, and I encourage you to stay in touch. If you would like to know more about my work in the Senate, please feel free to sign up for my weekly updates at http://murray.senate.gov/updates. Again, thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with me.

Sincerely,

Patty Murray
United States Senator

Janelle’s comment to me when forwarding it was a perfect descriptor:

She answered with a non answer.  Way to talk around the issue.

Murray however gave a much different response to a friend of mine:

Dear Mr. Willington:

Thank you for writing me regarding the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. It was good to hear from you.

As a mother, grandmother, and former preschool teacher I was shocked by the tragedy that unfolded in Newtown. My thoughts and prayers go out to the families and loved ones of the victims whose loss is difficult to comprehend.

Unfortunately, this horrific tragedy was another in a long line of gun violence episodes that have ranged from places like Columbine, Virginia Tech, and Aurora to coffee shops in Lakewood to the corner of South Byron Street and McClintock Ave South in Seattle. These episodes have plagued our cities, our schools, and our shared sense of security. This cannot go on. As a society we need to come together to begin a real conversation on all the factors contributing to those horrific instances of gun violence, but we also need to take specific action to bolster our current gun safety laws.

There is no question that we can and should limit access to the assault style weapons of war that are on our streets and that are too often being used to kill innocent people indiscriminately. I have repeatedly voted for an assault weapons ban and will do so again as soon as we can get a bill to the Senate floor.

But preventing tragedies like the one in Newtown will take more than just common-sense gun policies and enforcement. It will also take a renewed commitment to understanding and dealing with the root causes that lead isolated individuals to carry out these atrocities. At this moment, everything needs to be on the table for scrutiny.

Our nation is at a crossroads moment, and we must take the path that protects future generations from re-living these gun violence tragedies over and over again. It will take the courage of people with opposing views but a common purpose sitting down with one another and agreeing that the status quo is unacceptable.

Please be assured I will keep your views in mind as I work with my colleagues and please feel free to share with me your ideas on how to address this crisis. If you would like to know more about my work in the Senate, please feel free to sign up for my updates at http://murrav.senate.gov/updates. Thank you for contacting me, and please do not hesitate to contact me again.

Sincerely,
Patty Murray
United States Senator

We haven’t gotten a response from Cantwell regarding her specific letter though here is her response to my letter:

Dear Mr. Barnett,

Thank you for contacting me regarding the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. I appreciate hearing from you on this important issue.

All Washingtonians – and all Americans – offer our deepest condolences to the families of the 20 children and six school staff members who were killed in this senseless attack. Our thoughts and prayers are with the community of Newtown, as its residents heal from this incomprehensible tragedy.

This horrific attack highlights several issues that must be addressed promptly in order to better protect against such inexplicable violence.    We need to get powerful assault weapons off our streets.  And we need to strengthen services for the mentally ill and their families.

In the past, I supported the original Assault Weapons Ban and the Brady Bill, as well as the Youth Handgun Safety Act of 1993, which prohibits juveniles from possessing or receiving handguns. I look forward to work with my colleagues in the Senate to strengthen responsible legislation to rein in gun violence. We need to work to close the loopholes in existing laws that allow criminals and children to gain access to firearms contrary to the law’s intention. One example is the well-known "gun-show loophole" which allows people to purchase firearms at gun-shows without undergoing the background check required when guns are bought from licensed dealers. Lastly, I believe we must support increased gun-safety and gun-use education.

I support the Second Amendment and the rights of law-abiding Washingtonians who own guns.  I also remain focused on addressing the deeply troubling violence in this country and making our state and our country as safe as possible for all people, including our most vulnerable citizens, our children. I believe both of these goals are important and can be simultaneously accomplished through common-sense gun laws and stricter enforcement of existing laws.

Along with addressing gun violence, making services for the mentally ill and their families more accessible will encourage those suffering from mental illness to seek needed care and support. Mental health care is a critical component of our healthcare system and an individual’s overall health status. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, approximately one in 17 Americans suffers from a seriously debilitating mental illness. I care deeply about mental health care and understand the important role behavioral health services play in the lives of both those who suffer from mental illness and their family and loved ones.

Thank you again for contacting me to share your thoughts on this matter. Please do not hesitate to contact me in the future if I can be of further assistance.
Sincerely,
Maria Cantwell
United States Senator

If you live in the state of Washington.  Light up their phones and crank up the heat.  I am liking the idea Robb had, especially since the local gun shows draw from both Idaho and Washington so we’d get a decent set of calls into multiple districts.  Combine that with methods for people to send letters to congress critters it could be quite effective.  Especially if you had people there who could help them personalize them instead of form letters.

As you will notice on the right hand side, I’ve added a Join the NRA link.  I know some aren’t too happy with the NRA, I’m one of them.  As Sebastian said though, we have the NRA we’re going into this fight with, it’s not going to change and you’re not going to wish up an alternative.  Do what you can, voice your opinion to the NRA, they have a better record of listening than congress, and get active.  If all you do is bitch in the corner about how they don’t represent you, of course they won’t.  You haven’t lifted a finger to guide them in representing you.

I’ve also added a quick box to aid people in contacting their legislators.  Do it if you haven’t already.  There is nothing to loose by doing so and you have everything to gain.  As you can see folks, this is going to be an up hill battle and this is one we can not loose.  A quote worth remembering of which I was reminded of it by a friend of mine:

“Never give in, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never Yield to a force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.”
― Winston S. Churchill

We must stand and fight.  We must not waiver, we must not flinch.  We must come out on top, our very culture depends on it.

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.

He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.

Who Needs the 4th Amendment…

Leahy’s rewritten bill would allow more than 22 agencies — including the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Communications Commission — to access Americans’ e-mail, Google Docs files, Facebook wall posts, and Twitter direct messages without a search warrant. It also would give the FBI and Homeland Security more authority, in some circumstances, to gain full access to Internet accounts without notifying either the owner or a judge. (CNET obtained the revised draft from a source involved in the negotiations with Leahy.)

Unpossible I say, a politician rewriting a bill to be counter to the interests of Americans after debuting it as being to their benefit?  It’s like they know the public doesn’t want this but it’s the only way they can pull it off.

Who needs the 4th amendment, am I right?  They’re not even trying to be overt about this anymore.  Can someone please explain to me why the government needs this kind of power.  How is it that the act of informing a judge and getting a warrant to express probable cause for the invasion of privacy is necessary is a hindrance?

Oh, that’s right, it’s a hindrance to finding undesirables to be weeded out of the population. While anyone with half a brain should know not to expect those things to be private, which is why I’m not a big fan of the cloud, it seems a far stretch the government cannot first obtain a warrant.

Contact your legislator now and start raising hell.  Just to illustrate the double standard of this, I’m reasonably sure it’s safe elected officials will be exempt and still require a warrant. Laws for thee not for me.  If these elected representatives want this, they need to make their services public for all to see… They’ve got nothing to hide right?  At least that’s what they keep telling us.

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.

He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.

SSCC #457 – Pinellas Park

Try to stop the flames of a fire from reaching your house because the fire department still hasn’t arrived, the police will tase you for it.

But after a few minutes passed without firefighters arriving, a frustrated Jensen stepped forward and leaned down to grab the skinny gray garden hose once again.

That’s when he heard the order.

“Hit ‘em! Take him down! Tase him!”

The claim is that by attempting to defend his house from the fire he was endangering the officers and supposedly himself.

Well if the officers don’t want to get dirty, stay the hell back.  Second there was 10 feet between the fire and his house, plenty of room to maneuver.  My personal favorite though is this claim by the department.

Pinellas Park Capt. Sanfield Forseth told the Tampa Bay Times authorities could have even charged Jensen with obstruction, but decided against it.

Uhh, listen sparky, I can tell you exactly why the prosecutor, not your deputies, refused to press charges.  No jury in the world would convict or sympathize because what he was doing does not fit the legal definition of obstruction.  Tell me, how was he interfering with officers of the court?  Was he attempting to lie, give false information, or otherwise inhibit the investigation of a crime?

At best you could attempt to hold him for contempt of cop except honestly your officers didn’t have authority there either.  Personally if this guy is married, his wife should have grabbed the AR and shot every last one of them.  Seriously, that was uncalled for and unnecessary.

Personally had I been an officer there I would have helped keep the fire from his house, since if it spreads fighting it gets a lot worse.  This is what happens when you create monkeys who only know how to pull a trigger and are trained not to think.

What really pisses me off:

He said that when they arrived on the scene, they told him to back off and let insurance take care of it. He did for a few minutes but grew impatient and irate. He picked up the hose again because he thought firefighters weren’t getting there soon enough.

Hey assholes, some things are irreplaceable and there’s still this thing called a deductible   But it’s not your money right?

State Sponsored Criminal #457: Officer John Doe

Because a man attempting to prevent loosing his house to fire is an immediate threat to the public and requires the use of force to a level of which involves incapacitating him and could still be lethal.*

*It’s less lethal, not non-lethal there idiots.

h/t Uncle

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.

He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.

SSCC #449 – Flint Township

It is said that those who do not learn from history are bound to repeat it.  Take for example Flint Michigan.

A Flint Township police officer has been fired again following a vote by board members earlier this week.

The 5-to-0 vote — with Trustee George Menoutes and Treasurer Sandra Wright absent — came after a closed session and upon recommendations from Police Chief George Sippert and labor attorney Steve Shultz.

Township Supervisor Karyn Miller confirmed Officer Matthew Needham had also been terminated in November 2011 for violating four department rules and regulations, but she declined to give details on what specific incidents led to each vote.

Not once but twice.  You would think that they would have learned the first time.  Now it is worth noting that the union filed a grievance which is how he was allowed to return to the force.  He returned in June 2012, 5 months later he’s terminated again.

It’s almost like the unions are working to keep criminals on the street with a badge.

State Sponsored Criminal #449: Matthew Needham

Because cops shouldn’t be punished and held accountable for their decisions or actions.

Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.

He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.