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California: Police Raid Car Enthusiast Gathering, 'Generate Revenue'

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posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 10:46 AM
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California: Police Raid Car Enthusiast Gathering, 'Generate Revenue'


www.thenewspaper.com

Nine police agencies in Riverside, California sent more than one hundred police officers to surround a gathering of automotive enthusiasts. Owners of imported sport compact cars had gathered at the Canyon Crossing shopping center on Friday night to swap stories, talk about their passion for cars and show off the latest enhancements to their rides. At around 11pm police surprised participants by blocking all exits with fifty police cruisers. Officers then began a warrantless search and interrogation operation of the 150 vehicles that were present.

"If you're not into street racing, why would you need that?" Riverside Police Traffic Sergeant Skip Showalter asked an enthusiast during a similar crackdown last year. "Why would you want more power going to your car?"
(visit the link for the full news article)



[edit on 8-4-2008 by DimensionalDetective]




posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 10:46 AM
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Oh, for the love of Pete...You have got to be kidding me...Is this really what we have come to? This type of authoritorian nonsense and harrassment is getting so out of hand anymore that it's alarming...

Really, we needed 100 cops to raid and conduct warrantless searches on car enthusiasts just trying to enjoy their hobby?

More awesome use of our tax-payer dollars at work.

Disgusting.


Police issued a total of forty-eight tickets for "engine modifications" with police accusing the owners of the parked vehicles of being street racers. Another fifty tickets were issued for paperwork violations, dark window tinting and lack of a front license plate. The most revenue, however, will be generated from the fees imposed on twenty vehicles that were confiscated. Despite labeling the parking lot raid as taking place at a "street racing venue," Riverside Police offered no evidence that any street racing actually took place.

Across the state, gas tax funds are regularly used to fund similar crackdowns that generate big revenue. In 2004, the California Highway Patrol issued a total of 101,553 "modified car" citations worth $10.5 million according to CHP data obtained by TheNewspaper.



www.thenewspaper.com
(visit the link for the full news article)

[edit on 8-4-2008 by DimensionalDetective]



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 10:56 AM
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Gee, I feel safer already. I wonder if the operation collected more revenue than it cost the taxpayers?

(D., the link's not working-- you need a . after www)



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 10:58 AM
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The police did something similar to this in Houston TX around 6 or 8 years ago. It turned into a big mess with law suits. I don't remember the details but I believe some young people were arrested which started the negative opinions and law suits.



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 11:01 AM
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As a car enthusiast myself, this is pretty disturbing. I am aware that the laws for modifying cars in California is much stricter than anywhere else in the country. However, for the quoted police officer to assume that just because a car is modified, that automatically makes that person a "street racer" is completely rediculous. There are legal race tracks for this reason. This gathering of cars just seemed like a normal meet where people just BS and talk cars. Cops are usually fine with it here as long as the owner of the parking lot doesn't mind.



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 11:04 AM
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reply to post by DimensionalDetective
 


Sue all nine police districts that where partaking in this incident.. and fire every last one of the planners to this organization.

If I where in that car club I could assure the police that my lawyers would have paper work being shoved so far up their backside they wouldn't sit for a year.

Why do people hate police officers? Answer: They make people hate them.

EDIT: Maybe I am just bitter because yesterday I was driving on the highway in construction following an RV when a police officer infront of the RV slams on her brakes to pull into the construction area to set up a speed trap.. RV slams on brakes, I end up having to slam my car into a concrete wall to save my self decapitation from sliding under the RV.

Police officer was nice enough.. I didn't get a ticket or anything, and the RV for whatever reason sped off into traffic even after I took the back end off of it. Had to be a 100k+ RV.. quite perplexing.. but still.. why do they set up speed traps in congested areas like that? To fill quotas. Chasing speeders is far more dangerous then the speeders themselves.

[edit on 4/8/2008 by Rockpuck]



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 11:15 AM
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Yeah... way to protect us from the bad guys.


This just proves what the police force really is... a business.



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 11:27 AM
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They will try and prove intent to race, and therefore reinforce that it is illegal to think, thought crimes. That is all this is, that and wanting to punish a whole group for what a few STUPID racers do. Yes, people street race, yes, smart people take it to the track so they don't die, get arrested, or get their car taken away. Why punish a group of people hanging out for what a few dumb people do. Loitering maybe, but intent to race while sitting there hanging out in a parking lot and talking? Retarded.



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 11:29 AM
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I think that the police in the country are flirting with disaster with this type of policy. Maybe I'm wrong but I'm thinking that at some point there might be a total rebellion against this type of crap.

From now on I think I'm going to sue the every cop I have contact with. You write me a ticket, you get sued. You look at me wrong, you get sued. The police dept. and the city are going to get sued also. I have a lawyer that loves to sue people, and he doesn't charge me a dime.


Court is going to become a hobby of mine. Come arrest me, I don't care you are getting sued.



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 11:37 AM
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reply to post by downtown436
 



That is an awesome idea downtown, let us know how it works out, cause if it works even a little bit, then i'm sure a lot of people will start doing it and maybe some change will happen.



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 11:40 AM
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Lets see:

A.) private property.....no vehicular jurisdiction.....
B.) 150 officers - seveeral hours - 48 tickets....they will lose money on this venture



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 12:24 PM
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Originally posted by Kruel
Yeah... way to protect us from the bad guys.


This just proves what the police force really is... a business.


Bingo...Another form of government generating income...The LE have their raids, ticketing and fines, the higher levels have their wars and lobbying for dirty crap to let slide. It's a big scam imposed upon the little people.



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 01:01 PM
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You hear things like this and then you wonder why kids get into trouble,my 17 yr old belongs to a car club,only place they race is off road,basically the cop's look for nitrous bottles,sure sign of a street racer



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 01:11 PM
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Yeah, who wants to catch all those rapists, murderers and robbers when there are perfectly easy law abiding citizens to pick on...



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 01:43 PM
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Here's the view from the local right-wing lame stream rag:


Riverside police may have put a dent in local street racing Friday when about 100 officers raided a parking lot on Valley Springs Parkway, where suspected racers are known to congregate.

Police from Riverside and other agencies shut off the exits to the lot to inspect more than 150 vehicles. Officers wrote a similar number of citations, including 48 for illegal modifications common to street racing, according to a police news release.

Twenty vehicles were towed from the scene as part of a crackdown funded by a $503,000 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, according to a police news release.

Police spokesman Steven Frasher said officers had been monitoring illegal activity in the lot for weeks. The large number of people who received tickets for illegal modifications common to street racing confirmed officers' suspicions that the lot was a hotbed of street racing activity, he said.

"Almost every vehicle that was there, even if they weren't street racing, they were ... an audience," Frasher said, adding that the lot was full of skid marks left behind by racers.
The Press-Enterprise | Police raid hits street racing

Notice how the article's headline declares "Police raid hits street racing?"

And yet there's no evidence they were actively racing at the time.

So they had been "monitoring illegal activity in the lot for weeks" but didn't bother to write any tickets to the actual perps as it happened.

Instead they wait and write tickets, painting everyone there with a broad brush, based upon skid marks and illegal modifications.

off/topic

I used to work across the street from a popular lot for car enthusiasts.

We could always tell when the cops would show up 'cause the cars would scatter like roaches when the lights come on.



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 09:00 PM
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reply to post by goosdawg
 


Oh, those evil, dangerous perps! Making modifications to their cars! Shame on those heathens! LMAO

Seriously, every last one of these guys should get a good lawyer and sue the living crap out of every one of those departments for harassment.



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 09:55 PM
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The DA needs to be the subject of any civil law suit here. I would expect that office to be the responsible actor to avoid such a misdirected use of police power. In order for such multi-jurisdictional activities to be coordinate a DA-level officer of the court had to be involved. Of course, there's no reason the local ACLU shouldn't have a couple of crack paralegals research local known licensed import/export concerns (maybe some unlicensed ones too) to see if there are any major 'people v. XXXX' cases involving shipping and transport of tariff-regulated merchandise (think money laundering) There are going to be many possible 'traces' of reasons why several hundreds of thousands of state dollars had to be expended (justification to the budget office at least.) The most important link will be who's testimony forms the framework of whatever case they claim to have against these people.
i have found that when a police action like this takes place, it is nearly impossible to completely 'hide' the real reason for it, unless someone at the state-level is willing to claim they personally cooked up the 'Elliot Ness-style crackdown on the notorious gangs of car aficionados and there wretched peaceful gatherings'

I can't believe that there a way that all 9 Police Chiefs/Captains/Commanders could have thought this was an effective use of funds, considering crime activity in the areas makes 'those darn kids and their fast cars' look like something out of a Boy's Town movie. If I were in a more 'conspiratorial' mindset right now I would be tempted to speculate about 'wagging the dog' (i.e. what is it that they hope we don't look into since we have this gem to chew on?)



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 10:00 PM
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Sarcasm on/ Hey when property values are falling rapidly in Cali thereby reducing property tax income what do you do. You tell the local police chief to raise revenue however he can./sarcasm off



posted on Apr, 8 2008 @ 11:00 PM
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The cops should be cited for impersonating intelligence.
When is a race not a race? duh when the cars are parked.They ticketed people for modifications on thier cars that give them more power.They should give themselves tickets also as police cars are modified for more power that factory stock.

It's just another bogus act by our favorite oppressors



posted on Apr, 9 2008 @ 12:48 AM
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This is pretty bad, but it's regular here in Toronto. The larger weekly meets always get raided even though there's very little street racing here now as opposed to a few years ago when I was involved in it.

About 5-6 years ago they did something much worse in Ontario than they did at this meet however. There was a campaign by police and media asking street racers to take it to the track, and they would then setup road blocks right by the tracks themselves and inspect your vehicle, and fine you or confiscate your car because it was modified.

This is all a money grab for the government, and yet another freedom being taken away from us.



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