Archive for the News Category

Toxic Levels of Arsenic Found in Popular Juice Brands pt5

Posted in Attack on the Republic, Business, Cancer, Corruption, General, Life Improvement, Multi-National Corporations, News, Poison Foods and Products with tags , , , , , , , , on December 2, 2011 by truthwillrise

From yahoo.com:

A Chronic Problem

Arsenic has been notoriously used as a poison since ancient times. A fatal poisoning would require a single dose of inorganic arsenic about the weight of a postage stamp. But chronic toxicity can result from long-term exposure to much lower levels in food, and even to water that meets the 10-ppb drinking-water limit.

A 2004 study of children in Bangladesh suggested diminished intelligence based on test scores in children exposed to arsenic in drinking water at levels above 5 ppb, says study author Joseph Graziano, Ph.D., a professor of environmental health sciences and pharmacology at Columbia University. He’s now conducting similar research with children living in New Hampshire and Maine, where arsenic levels of 10 to 100 ppb are commonly found in well water, to determine whether better nutrition in the United States affects the results.

People with private wells may face greater risks than those on public systems because they’re responsible for testing and treating their own water. In Maine, where almost half the population relies on private wells, the USGS found arsenic levels in well water as high as 3,100 ppb.

And a study published in 2011 in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health examined the long-term effects of low-level exposure on more than 300 rural Texans whose groundwater was estimated to have arsenic at median levels below the federal drinking-water standard. It found that exposure was related to poor scores in language, memory, and other brain functions.

“I suspect there is an awful lot of chronic, low-level arsenic poisoning going on that’s never properly diagnosed.”—Michael Harbut, M.D.

Toxic Levels of Arsenic Found in Popular Juice Brands pt4

Posted in Attack on the Republic, Business, Cancer, Corruption, Economy, General, Life Improvement, Multi-National Corporations, News, Poison Foods and Products, Truth/Freedom with tags , , , , , on December 2, 2011 by truthwillrise

Answering a Crucial Question

We also wanted to know whether people who drink juice end up being exposed to more arsenic than those who don’t.

So we commissioned an analysis of data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), conducted annually by the National Center for Health Statistics. Information is collected on the health and nutrition of a nationally representative sample of the U.S. population, based on interviews and physical exams that may include a blood or urine test. Officials and researchers often use the data to determine risk factors for major diseases and develop public health policy. In fact, data on lead in the blood of NHANES participants were instrumental in developing policies that have successfully resulted in lead being removed from gasoline.

Our analysis was led by Richard Stahlhut, M.D., M.P.H., an environmental health researcher at the University of Rochester with expertise in NHANES data, working with Consumer Reports statisticians. Ana Navas-Acien, M.D., Ph.D., a physician—epidemiologist at Johns Hopkins University’s Bloomberg School of Public Health, also provided guidance. She was the lead author of a 2008 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association that first linked low-level arsenic exposure with the prevalence of type 2 diabetes in the United States.

Stahlhut reviewed NHANES data from 2003 through 2008 from participants tested for total urinary arsenic who reported their food and drink consumption for 24 hours the day before their NHANES visit. Because most ingested arsenic is excreted in urine, the best measure of recent exposure is a urine test.

Following Navas-Acien’s advice, we excluded from our NHANES analysis anyone with results showing detectable levels of arsenobetaine, the organic arsenic in seafood. That made the results we analyzed more likely to represent inorganic arsenic, of greatest concern in terms of potential health risks.

The resulting analysis of almost 3,000 study participants found that those reporting apple-juice consumption had on average 19 percent greater levels of total urinary arsenic than those subjects who did not, and those who reported drinking grape juice had 20 percent higher levels. The results might understate the correlation between juice consumption and urinary arsenic levels because NHANES urinary data exclude children younger than 6, who tend to be big juice drinkers.

“The current analysis suggests that these juices may be an important contributor to dietary arsenic exposure,” says Keeve Nachman, Ph.D., a risk scientist at the Center for a Livable Future and the Bloomberg School of Public Health, both at Johns Hopkins University. “It would be prudent to pursue measures to understand and limit young children’s exposures to arsenic in juice.”

Robert Wright, M.D., M.P.H., associate professor of pediatrics and environmental health at Harvard University who specializes in research on the effect of heavy-metals exposure in children, says that findings from our juice tests and database analysis concern him: “Because of their small size, a child drinking a box of juice would consume a larger per-body-weight dose of arsenic than an adult drinking the exact same box of juice. Those brands with elevated arsenic should investigate the source and eliminate it.”

Toxic Levels of Arsenic Found in Popular Juice Brands pt 2

Posted in Attack on the Republic, Business, Cancer, Corruption, Economy, General, News, Poison Foods and Products with tags , , , , , , , on December 2, 2011 by truthwillrise

From yahoo.com

Other Dietary Exposures

In addition to juice, foods including chicken, rice, and even baby food have been found to contain arsenic—sometimes at higher levels than the amounts found in juice. Brian Jackson, Ph.D., an analytical chemist and research associate professor at Dartmouth College, presented his findings at a June 2011 scientific conference in Aberdeen, Scotland. He reported finding up to 23 ppb of arsenic in lab tests of name-brand jars of baby food, with inorganic arsenic representing 70 to 90 percent of those total amounts.

Similar results turned up in a 2004 study conducted by FDA scientists in Cincinnati, who found arsenic levels of up to 24 ppb in baby food, with sweet potatoes, carrots, green beans, and peaches containing only the inorganic form. A United Kingdom study published in 2008 found that the levels of inorganic arsenic in 20-ounce packets of dried infant rice cereals ranged from 60 to 160 ppb. Rice-based infant cereals are often the first solid food that babies eat.

Rice frequently contains high levels of inorganic arsenic because it is among plants that are unusually efficient at taking up arsenic from the soil and incorporating it in the grains people eat. Moreover, much of the rice produced in the U.S. is grown in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Texas, on land formerly used to grow cotton, where arsenical pesticides were used for decades.

“Initially, in some regions rice planted there produced little grain due to these arsenical pesticides, but farmers then bred a type of rice specifically designed to produce high yields on the contaminated soil,” says Andrew Meharg, professor of biogeochemistry at the University of Aberdeen, in Scotland. Meharg studies human exposures to arsenic in the environment. His research over the past six years has shown that U.S. rice has among the highest average inorganic arsenic levels in the world—almost three times higher than levels in Basmati rice imported from low-arsenic areas of Nepal, India, and Pakistan. Rice from Egypt has the lowest levels of all.

Infant rice cereal for the U.S. market is generally made from U.S. rice, Meharg says, but labeling usually doesn’t specify country of origin. He says exposure to arsenic through infant rice cereals could be reduced greatly if cereal makers used techniques that don’t require growing rice in water-flooded paddies or if they obtained rice from low-arsenic areas. His 2007 study found that median arsenic levels in California rice were 41 percent lower than levels in rice from the south-central U.S.

Toxic Levels of Arsenic Found in Popular Juice Brands

Posted in Attack on Freedom, Business, Cancer, Corruption, General, News with tags , , , , , , , , on December 2, 2011 by truthwillrise

From yahoo.com:

Arsenic has long been recognized as a poison and a contaminant in drinking water, but now concerns are growing about arsenic in foods, especially in fruit juices that are a mainstay for children.

Controversy over arsenic in apple juice made headlines as the school year began when Mehmet Oz, M.D., host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” told viewers that tests he’d commissioned found 10 of three dozen apple-juice samples with total arsenic levels exceeding 10 parts per billion (ppb). There’s no federal arsenic threshold for juice or most foods, though the limit for bottled and public water is 10 ppb. The Food and Drug Administration, trying to reassure consumers about the safety of apple juice, claimed that most arsenic in juices and other foods is of the organic type that is “essentially harmless.”

But an investigation by Consumer Reports shows otherwise. Our study, including tests of apple and grape juice, a scientific analysis of federal health data, a consumer poll, and interviews with doctors and other experts, finds the following:

Roughly 10 percent of our juice samples, from five brands, had total arsenic levels that exceeded federal drinking-water standards. Most of that arsenic was inorganic arsenic, a known carcinogen.
One in four samples had lead levels higher than the FDA’s bottled-water limit of 5 ppb. As with arsenic, no federal limit exists for lead in juice.
Apple and grape juice constitute a significant source of dietary exposure to arsenic, according to our analysis of federal health data from 2003 through 2008.
Children drink a lot of juice. Thirty-five percent of children 5 and younger drink juice in quantities exceeding pediatricians’ recommendations, our poll of parents shows.
Mounting scientific evidence suggests that chronic exposure to arsenic and lead even at levels below water standards can result in serious health problems.
Inorganic arsenic has been detected at disturbing levels in other foods, too, which suggests that more must be done to reduce overall dietary exposure.
Tainted brands include Minute Maid, Mott’s, Gerber, Welch’s, and Great Value (Walmart) among others. See results from tests on other apple and grape juice brands.

Our findings have prompted Consumers Union, the advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, to urge the FDA to set arsenic and lead standards for apple and grape juice. Our scientists believe that juice should at least meet the 5 ppb lead limit for bottled water. They recommend an even lower arsenic limit for juice: 3 ppb.

“People sometimes say, ‘If arsenic exposure is so bad, why don’t you see more people sick or dying from it?’ But the many diseases likely to be increased by exposure even at relatively low levels are so common already that its effects are overlooked simply because no one has looked carefully for the connection,” says Joshua Hamilton, Ph.D., a toxicologist specializing in arsenic research and the chief academic and scientific officer at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Mass.

As our investigation found, when scientists and doctors do look, the connections they’ve found underscore the need to protect public health by reducing Americans’ exposure to this potent toxin.

Toxic Levels of Arsenic Found in Popular Juice Brands

Posted in Attack on Freedom, Big Brother, Business, Cancer, Corruption, General, Multi-National Corporations, News, Poison Foods and Products with tags , , , , , on December 2, 2011 by truthwillrise

What the Tests Found

We tested juice from bottles, cans, and juice boxes that we bought in three states.

We went shopping in Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York in August and September, buying 28 apple juices and three grape juices. Our samples came from ready-to-drink bottles, juice boxes, and cans of concentrate. For most juices, we bought three different lot numbers to assess variability. (For some juices, we couldn’t find three lots, so we tested one or two.) In all, we tested 88 samples.

Five samples of apple juice and four of grape juice had total arsenic levels exceeding the 10 ppb federal limit for bottled and drinking water. Levels in the apple juices ranged from 1.1 to 13.9 ppb, and grape-juice levels were even higher, 5.9 to 24.7 ppb. Most of the total arsenic in our samples was inorganic, our tests showed.

As for lead, about one fourth of all juice samples had levels at or above the 5-ppb limit for bottled water. The top lead level for apple juice was 13.6 ppb; for grape juice, 15.9 ppb.

Apple Juice

The following brands had at least one sample of apple juice that exceeded 10 ppb:

Apple & Eve
Great Value (Walmart)
Mott’s
And these brands had one or more samples of apple juice that exceeded 5 ppb of lead:

America’s Choice (A&P)
Gerber
Gold Emblem (CVS)
Great Value
Joe’s Kids (Trader Joe’s)
Minute Maid
Seneca
Walgreens
Grape Juice

For grape juice, at least one sample from Walgreens and Welch’s exceeded 10 ppb. At least one sample of grape juice exceeding 5 ppb of lead came from:

Gold Emblem (CVS)
Walgreens
Welch’s
Our findings provide a spot check of a number of local juice aisles, but they can’t be used to draw general conclusions about arsenic or lead levels in any particular brand. Even within a single tested brand, levels of arsenic and lead sometimes varied widely.

View the complete test results for all 88 samples.

Arsenic-tainted soil in U.S. orchards is a likely source of contamination for apples, and finding lead with arsenic in juices that we tested is not surprising. Even with a ban on lead-arsenate insecticides, “we are finding problems with some Washington state apples, not because of irresponsible farming practices now but because lead-arsenate pesticides that were used here decades ago remain in the soil,” says Denise Wilson, Ph.D., an associate professor at the University of Washington who has tested apple juices and discovered elevated arsenic levels even in brands labeled organic.

Over the years, a shift has occurred in how juice sold in America is produced. To make apple juice, manufacturers often blend water with apple-juice concentrate from multiple sources. For the past decade, most concentrate has come from China. Concerns have been raised about the possible continuing use of arsenical pesticides there, and several Chinese provinces that are primary apple-growing regions are known to have high arsenic concentrations in groundwater.

A much bigger test than ours would be needed to establish any correlation between elevated arsenic or lead levels and the juice concentrate’s country of origin. Samples we tested included some made from concentrate from multiple countries including Argentina, China, New Zealand, South Africa, and Turkey; others came from a single country. A few samples solely from the United States had elevated levels of lead or arsenic, and others did not. The same was true for samples containing only Chinese concentrate.

The FDA has been collecting its own data to see whether it should set guidelines to continue to ensure the safety of apple juice, a spokeswoman told us.

The Juice Products Association said, “We are committed to providing nutritious and safe fruit juices to consumers and will comply with limits established by the agency.”

NEXT: Are Juice Drinkers in Danger?

Thetruthwillrise’s take on Bin Laden’s “death”, part 2

Posted in "Terrorism", 9/11, Attack on Freedom, News, the 9/11 Files, Thoughts, Truth/Freedom with tags , , , , , , , , on July 17, 2011 by truthwillrise

This is part two of my analysis of the latest round of fear based political theatre.

 

The Spectre of “Gay Rights”

Posted in Attack on Freedom, Censorship, General, Legal, News, Thoughts, Truth/Freedom with tags , , , , , , on July 13, 2011 by truthwillrise

Before the recent hijacking of the masses’ collective psyche by the theatre of the Anthony case, New York became the sixth state to legalize same sex marriage joining Iowa,Massachusetts, Vermont,New Hampshire,and Connecticut .

It has been heralded as a major victory for “gay rights”( I will explain why I used the quotations). I’m personally indifferent on the issues for a variety of reasons.

I think the term “gay rights” is a misnomer. Homosexuals are free to do anything they want with the exception of marriage in 44 states and in my estimation, it’s not the want to be married, it’s certain benefits that the institution grants.

The recent CNN interview with former New York Giants player David Tyree reminded me of something I have been seeing that compares gay “rights” to that of the struggle of the Civil Rights movement. I have even seen shirts that state that being gay is the new black. While I do not agree with Mr. Tyree’s stance on the issue (he is stauchly opposed to homosexual marriage and stated it would lead to “anarchy”), I respected the manner in which he was able to articulate himself. What I had a problem with was the interviewer, Kyra Phillips insinuating that because Tyree was black then he should be in favor of gay marriage. I know homosexuals have been mistreated in various instances, but to try to correlate the two is an insult not only to black people now but especially to the elders and to those who transitioned during the movement. Homosexuals can’t say they had police dogs and firehouses turned on them or had separate entrances in buildings. I have never seen gay and straight water fountains. Can a homosexual say they have been pulled over for DWG (Driving While Gay) or had the joy of being followed around a store? Granted, there have been many gay people maimed and even killed just because of their sexual orientation, but for every Matthew Shepherd, there are hundreds of Emmett Tills.

BREAKING NEWS! Settlement Reached in Bishop Eddie Long Case (He Paid Them Hush Money)

Posted in Business, Corruption, False Teachers, General, Legal, News, Pulpit Pimps with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 27, 2011 by truthwillrise

Uploaded by  on May 26, 2011

Source: http://www.myfoxatlanta.com/dpp/news/laywer%3A-settlement-reached-in-bishop-e…

Eddie Long: Settlement Reached in Bishop Eddie Long Case (He Paid Them Hush Money)

Video Shows Officer Offering Truckers Freedom For Cash

Posted in Attack on Freedom, Corruption, New World Order, News, Police State/Martial Law, Tyranny with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 21, 2011 by truthwillrise

By Phil Williams
Chief Investigative Reporter

Video of the traffic stop

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — New video obtained byNewsChannel 5 Investigates shows an interstate interdiction officer offering to trade the freedom of two truckers — for their cash.

The DA says it’s good police work.

But critics say it’s a prime example of how the rules have been twisted by laws that let agencies keep the money they seize.

The video — obtained under the Tennessee Public Records Act — shows a May 2010 traffic stop in rural Hickman County, on a darkened stretch of westbound Interstate 40.

There, two California truckers were given a tough choice: potentially face a criminal prosecution or hand over the cash that the interdiction officer suspects is hidden somewhere in their tractor trailer.

“You’re going to have to trust me, or you’re going to out on a limb and see what happens once we find it,” the officer told the truckers.

Before the night was up, agents recovered piles of suspected drug money — almost a half a million dollars — money that their agency, the 21st Judicial District Drug Task Force, will get to keep.
Read officers’ narrative about why money seized

“I will do everything I can to take that money out of the hands of those drug dealers and the cartel,” District Attorney General Kim Helper toldNewsChannel 5 Investigates.

But Helper said the two truckers — who she believes were drug couriers — got to walk without even being asked to name their accomplices because she believes they had not really committed a crime that she could prosecute.

“The transportation of illegal drug proceeds through the state of Tennessee from my reading of the statute is not a crime,” Helper insisted.

The incident began as a routine traffic stop, except in this case agents are specifically looking for drug money heading back to Mexico.

Officer: “You say you’re not traveling with anything illegal in your truck, right? No drugs? And you’re not traveling with any large amounts of U.S. currency?”
Trucker: “No, sir. No, sir. No, sir.”
Officer: “You wouldn’t have a problem if I searched your truck or your trailer for any of the items mentioned?”
Driver: “Not at all.”

As the time passed, suspicions were aroused by discrepancies in the truckers’ stories, but officers were not finding anything up in the refrigerated trailer, known as a reefer.

So the agent began threatening the truckers with criminal prosecution.

Officer: “Money laundering is what it’s called, and it’s a federal offense. The good thing for you is when we seize money we don’t deal with the feds. We seize it ourselves.  And if it ain’t your money and you say ‘Agent Owens, it ain’t my money, I don’t know how it got there…'”

NewsChannel 5 Investigates asked the DA if the officer was not suggesting to the truck driver that his defense would be that he did not know how the money got there.

“I don’t think he is,” she answered, “because I think he recognizes at this point that the transport of money just through the state is not a crime under our money laundering statute.”

Yet, these are some of the statements that the officer made:

Officer: “Here’s the thing, alright. Don’t talk to him, just listen. Just listen. Do you want to go home?”
Trucker: “I sure do.”
Officer: “Does it not make sense that I’m trying to help you… because you honestly can’t think for a second that we ain’t going to stay here until we find it.”

NewsChannel 5 Investigates told Helper that the officer “sure is making this guy think he’s committed a crime.”

“Well, as I indicated to you,” she responded, “law enforcement agents use various means of questioning to get as much information as they can.”

But if someone has not committed a crime, is it proper for a police officer to make that person think that they have?

“I believe,” Helper said, “that officers can use a variety of techniques.”

The officer also assured the driver, that if they would cough up the cash, they would not be asked to rat out their accomplices.

Officer: “Hey, I’m not asking you if you have knowledge about it, and I won’t ask you if you have knowledge about it. You understand me? It’s not my job…. All I’m asking you is, where’s the money?”

Officer: “I don’t even care where you got it. I want the product. That’s what I’m after.”

NewsChannel 5 Investigates said to the DA that “throughout this incident the officers tell him you do not have to tell us where you got this money.”

Is that police work?

“Police work,” Helper said, “to the extent that these officers, from my perspective,  are trying to work with these guys who are merely the couriers.”

Still, we pressed, “At no point does any officer ever ask, ‘What’s the name of the big fish in this case?'”

“Right, right,” the DA acknowledged. “And I agree with you. Should they have asked it? Maybe.”

Finally, an hour into the traffic stop, the driver came clean.

Officer: “We’ll come back and you sign these forms saying you don’t know anything about it, you’re disclaiming it, it’s not yours and it’s done.”
Driver: “It’s in the back of the reefer. I don’t know how it got there.”
Officer: “OK.”
Driver: “It’s not mine.”
Officer: “We’re good!”

A short time later, the task force would be half a million dollars richer.

Still, the DA admitted that she isn’t completely happy with the outcome.

“I would love to see our legislature make a change so that we can make those arrests on the sides of the roads with these guys.”

We also found cases in the Dickson area where subjects admitted that the money was from drugs. Not only were they released, but we’re told that the video evidence of those stops was later destroyed.
Subject admitted $161,500 “was illegal drug money”
Subject admitted $46,500 “was illegal drug money”
Subject admitted $59,760 “was illegal drug money”
Subject admitted $198,000 “from the sale of cocaine”
Subject admitted $800,495 “from the sales of marijuana”

Still, a Nashville prosecutor, who was involved in drafting the state’s money laundering statute, tells NewsChannel 5 Investigates that he thinks the law could be used to bring criminal charges against some people running money for the drug cartels.

Helper says she’ll now ask lawmakers to clarify the law — something that apparently no DA had bothered to do before our investigation.

E-mail: pwilliams@newschannel5.com 

Back to NC5 Investigates: Policing for Profit

Middle Tennessee Police Profiting Off Drug Trade?

Posted in Attack on Freedom, Business, Corruption, economic tyranny, Economy, News, Police State/Martial Law, Tyranny with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 21, 2011 by truthwillrise

Poilce Corruption

By Phil Williams
Chief Investigative Reporter

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A major NewsChannel 5 investigation has uncovered serious questions about Tennessee’s war on drugs. Among the questions: are some police agencies more concerned about making money off the drugs, than stopping them?

At the center of this months-long investigation are laws that let officers pull driver over looking for cash.  Those officers do not even have to file criminal charges against a person to take his/her money.

It turns out, those kind of stops are now happening almost every day in Middle Tennessee.

Case in point: a 2009 stop where a tractor trailer was stopped for a traffic violation, leading to a search and the discovery of large blocks containing almost $200,000 cash — cash that officers keep on the suspicion that it’s drug money.

“What’s wrong with having a large amount of cash?” asked Karen Petrosyan, a California businessman who owned the truck.

Petrosyan refuses to admit there’s anything suspicious about the stash that police discovered. Officers later released his father, who was driving the truck, without filing a single charge — and authorities cut a deal that let Petrosyan come to Tennessee to get his big rig back.
Read officers’ narrative about why money seized

“If I am a criminal, if they allege me to be a criminal,” Petrosyan told NewsChannel 5 Investigates, “why would they settle? They do not just let criminals go.”

District Attorney General Kim Helper said that “in general, it was seized because — based upon our evidence and probable cause — it’s illegal drug proceeds.”

Still, Helper admitted that what makes the Petrosyan case a bit unusual is the location. The traffic stop occurred in Smith County, near the Carthage exit. But the officers work for Helper’s 21st Judicial District Drug Task Force out of Franklin — more than an hour away.

Her officers patrol that area under a deal where they give a third of any cash they seize to the agency that owns that stretch of road.
Read the agreement between the 21st and 15th judicial districts

“It’s a way to make money … for your task force?”NewsChannel 5 Investigates asked Helper.

The DA paused.

“Honestly?” we asked, prompting a smile from Helper.

“Well, you know, when you say ‘make money,’ I guess it is a way for us to continue to fund our operations so that we can put an end to drug trafficking and the drug trade within this district,” she responded.

In fact, Interstate 40 has become a major profit center for Tennessee law enforcement — with officers stopping and often searching out-of-state vehicles. It’s because of a state law that lets them seize money simply based on the suspicion that it’s linked to drug trafficking.

If an owner does not take legal action to get the money back, the agency gets to keep it all.

“This is really highway shakedowns coming to the U.S.,” said Scott Bullock, senior attorney with the Washington-based Institute for Justice.

Last year, the conservative-leaning group issued a report — “Policing for Profit” — that gave Tennessee a D-minus for civil forfeiture laws that make that it all possible.
Read the “Policing for Profit” report here

“Under civil forfeiture,” Bullock said, “you give law enforcement a direct and perverse incentive to go out and try to take as much property from citizens as possible.”

Dickson Police Chief Ricky Chandler said, “What we are doing, we’re taking advantage of how the laws are, to use the money to be able to put back to fight the drugs.”

Chandler heads the board for the 23rd Judicial District Drug Task Force, which has made millions off seizures in its counties — Humphreys, Dickson and Cheatham.  The town of Fairview also provides officers to the Task Force in exchange for a cut of the cash.

Then, three years ago, Chandler and the Dickson County sheriff helped create a second team — known as Dickson Interdiction Criminal Enforcement, or DICE — to work the exact same stretches of interstate.

Humphreys County and the town of Kingston Springs provide officers — and Cheatham County allows DICE to work in its jurisdiction — in exchange for a share of the money.
Read the agreement for the creation of DICE

“Everything’s paid through seizures and fines,” Chandler said.

NewsChannel 5 Investigates asked, “So if these officers out on the interstate don’t come up with cash, then they might lose their jobs?”

“Well, it’s a possibility, yes,” Chandler answered.

Out on I-40, interdiction officers have a choice: Conventional wisdom is that the drugs come in from Mexico on the eastbound side. But the money goes back on the west.

While both agencies have made some big drug cases, we spotted both the 23rd and DICE staging time and time again with their backs to the drug side.

In fact, a review of daily activity sheets kept by the 23rd discovered that, when officers noted the location of their traffic stops, there were 10 times as many stops on the money side.
Review activity sheets for 23rd DTF, Oct-Dec 2010
Review summary of 23rd DTF cases, 2009-2010

Both DICE and the 21st Judicial District say they do not keep such daily activity reports.

UPDATE: A review of case summaries supplied by DICE shows that the entire team made one drug seizure — 602 grams of heroin — from Interstate 40 in all of 2010.  Those officers arrested six people during stops on I-40 during that same 12-month period — four of them on fugitive warrants, not for drug possession.  Most DICE cases were seizures of money in the westbound lanes.
Review summary of DICE cases, 2010

“We want both sides of the road worked,” Chandler insisted.

NewsChannel 5 Investigates noted, “It looks like that they are not concerned about stopping the drugs, they just want the money.”

“That’s what it looks like,” the chief admitted.

Is that the case?

“That shouldn’t be the case, but that’s what it looks like.”

Scott Bullock with the Institute for Justice said that “it shows that the police are really focusing, not on trying to get the drugs, not on trying to enforce the drug laws and stop that flow throughout the country. They’re focused on getting the money.”

And it can lead to turf wars.

After DICE got a $1 million seizure last fall, police video shows that a DICE officer suddenly found himself being blocked by a unit from the 23rd while watching the westbound lanes. Within minutes, five units from the 23rd were lined up in a show of force.

As a result, the two agencies had to work out a “letter of agreement,” specifying who would have priority on the westbound lanes on which days.
Read the letter of agreement between the 23rd and DICE

Then, there’s a 2008 video where a unit from the 23rd cuts in front of a DICE unit on a stop, prompting this heated exchange:

23rd DTF Officer: “Leave me the f***k alone!”
DICE Officer: “Let me tell you something…”
23rd DTF Officer: “Punk!”
DICE Officer: “You ever come up [on] me and try to wreck me out again, it will be your last time. You understand?”

Chandler called those disputes “ridiculous.”

NewsChannel 5 Investigates noted, “You’ve got two agencies fighting to stop the same cars.”

“Competition can be a good thing,” the chief said, “as long as you don’t violate any person’s rights.”

But they’re competing for the money that they can take off of drivers.

“Well, they are competing to do their jobs is what they are competing for,” he insisted.

It’s a job that, Bullock said, has lost its way. “Law enforcement is supposed to be about getting the bad guys. It’s not supposed to be about making money.”

Law enforcement authorities say their goal is to hit the drug traffickers in the pocketbook.

But some people have hired lawyers after their cash was taken and, sometimes after months and months of litigation, judges have ruled that the money that was taken from them really had nothing to do with drug dealing at all.

E-mail: pwilliams@newschannel5.com 

Back to NC5 Investigates: Policing for Profit