Opportunity For Improvement

Police overreach; it’s not just for black people anymore:

In 2014, for the first time ever, law enforcement officers took more property from American citizens than burglars did. Martin Armstrong pointed this out at his blog, Armstrong Economics, last week.

Officers can take cash and property from people without convicting or even charging them with a crime — yes, really! — through the highly controversial practice known as civil asset forfeiture. Last year, according to the Institute for Justice, the Treasury and Justice departments deposited more than $5 billion into their respective asset forfeiture funds. That same year, the FBI reports that burglary losses topped out at $3.5 billion.

The WaPo’s Christopher Ingraham notes that on the one hand, the figure is a little misleading for two reasons:  the “burglary” figure counts only rigidly-defined burglaries, and ignores a variety of other larcenies and thefts (which, together, add up to double what the cops take), and the cops don’t keep it all.

But even counting only what they keep from burglaries, they still siphoned 50% more out of the economy than burglars did.

And that includes an awful lot of people never convicted of any crime.

Taking property without a conviction is something that needs to stop.

9 thoughts on “Opportunity For Improvement

  1. Taking LIBERY or Property without a conviction is something that needs to stop (see: No Fly List linking to No Buy List).

  2. I am really happy to see attention being paid to the excesses of law enforcement. People need to realize police are a necessary evil for the most part, and never be deluded into believing the police serve anything but the system.

    The police are not your friends.

  3. If I ever became insane enough – and had my past sufficiently fumigated enough – to run for office, two major planks of my platform would be eliminating “no-knock” raids and civil asset forfeiture.

  4. Something to keep in mind when Liberal trolls (Tim in St. Paul? Doug?) sneer and tell you much we the people owe the borderline psychopaths who hold public office. Did you know that it is possible for a government employee to be both a busybody and a layabout?

  5. While I agree asset forfeitures are too high and probably abused (wouldn’t it be better to go after some of these big drug dealers for tax evasion, like they did to Al Capone) I think we also have to take a lesson from bank robber Willie Sutton who said he robbed banks because “that’s where the money is.” A burglar breaks into your house and steals your TV, maybe a few pieces of jewelry. The cops take the whole house! Not to excuse it at all, but I would be curious as to how many individual incidents of burglary are in that total, compared with how many individual incidents of asset forfeiture.

    Again, I think we could do away with asset forfeiture BEFORE conviction and be better off. And tax evasion might be a better route to a conviction, with asset forfeiture being the natural and appropriate penalty.

  6. I’m voting for NW. And it strikes me as very interesting that the DNC, in announcing the murder of one of their employees, characterized him as a “public servant”. Well, while I can excuse an error or two in a moment of grief, it should still be remembered that he was a servant of the DNC, not the public, when he was killed. I would have to suggest that the DNC, and the left in general, is working hard to canonize their team in this regard.

  7. Taking property without a conviction used to be called theft. What are they calling it now?

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