Nearly 300 arrested in statewide drug sweep
Friday, March 07, 2008
News staff writer
Nearly 300 people were arrested in a statewide roundup Wednesday intended to nab drug criminals and show federal lawmakers the importance of funding such efforts.
Officers from more than a dozen drug task forces throughout Alabama fanned out over the state from dawn until midnight as part of a nationwide operation targeting drug dealers in rural and urban neighborhoods.
In Alabama, officers arrested 286 people, mostly on drug distribution warrants in ongoing cases where officers and agents have been actively buying drugs, said Birmingham police Sgt. Jim Henderson, vice president of the Alabama Narcotics Association.
Officers also encountered 15 endangered children, meaning they were living in conditions that exposed them to drugs, including highly-dangerous and potentially-explosive meth labs, according to statistics released Thursday.
There are 31 drug task forces in the state, said Henderson, who coordinated Wednesday's program in the state. Of those, 19 participated in the roundup, including the Multi-Agency Drug Enforcement Team based in Fairfield.
Those task forces, along with others across the country funded by the Byrne-Justice Assistance Grant, are facing devastating funding cuts.
The grant program this year was cut by 67 percent, from $520 million in 2007 to $170 million for 2008. The program has consistently received $500 million annually for more than a decade.
"The Bush administration believes law enforcement is a state and local problem, not a federal problem," Henderson said. "There's parts of the country where task forces are closing shop. We have some task forces here that have only three people covering three counties."
This is downright comical. Last month Sgt. Jim Henderson was bawling like a little sissy on the opinion page of the Birmingham News about the BYRNE Grant money being cut. And then this article today clearly shows that he and other narcotics task forces seem to have no financial difficulties arresting some 300 people. Not only that but that they held warrants in order to make a big media scene. Doesn't sound to me like they are doing this in the interest of public safety at all.
See, this whole thing was staged to try and get their money back....but what it really shows is that they don't need that money.
I also question why, if the cops knew there were children living in meth labs, did they wait until now to get them out? I guess the safety and well-being of the kids isn't as important when there is no money from the federal government to pimp them for.
And then this gem, "The Bush administration believes law enforcement is a state and local problem, not a federal problem," Henderson said. "There's parts of the country where task forces are closing shop. We have some task forces here that have only three people covering three counties."
Law enforcement IS a STATE and LOCAL problem Mr. Henderson. If you want to work for the feds then join the DEA. See, this is what federal BYRNE grant money does to local law enforcement....it federalizes them so that they no longer work for the people in their communities but whore their units out to Uncle Sam for a guv'ment check. These cops are taking a government welfare check for the drug war because rounding up low-end users and street dealers is way easier than going after murderers, rapists, child molesters and robbers. Think I'm making this up? Go have a look at the Alabama Criminal Justice Information Center's crime clearance rates. They are ABYSMAL! These cops are no different than some citizen's who take a guv'ment welfare check instead of getting a real job.
After Mr. Henderson's letter to the editor appeared last month the Assistant D.A. of Bessemer slammed him with a letter of his own damning the failed drug war.
Ok Alabama readers....get busy writing letters in response to this and in the event you get called for jury duty in a non-violent drug case please employ the American dissent tactic of JURY NULLIFICATION.