Palm Beach County, Florida – Journalists at the DC Post were looking through message boards that are frequented by law enforcement officers, when they found a post where one officer was causally talking about planting evidence on “mouthy drivers” and “street lawyers.”
The Post then contacted the officer and conducted an anonymous interview with him where he revealed his disturbing perspective.
The officer revealed the illegal and unethical actions that he is proud of taking on the job. The DC Post has also said that they have verified the officer’s position with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, and they have verified many of the claims that he has made.
The original post was titled “Tricks of the trade – let’s exchange!” and featured the following message:
“I have a method for getting people off the street that should not be there. Mouthy drivers, street lawyers, assholes and just anyone else trying to make my job difficult. Under my floor mat, I keep a small plastic dime baggie with Cocaine in residue. Since it’s just residue, if it is ever found during a search of my car like during an inspection, it’s easy enough to explain. It must have stuck to my foot while walking through San Castle. Anyways, no one’s going to question an empty baggie. The residue is the key because you can fully charge some asshole with possession of cocaine, heroin, or whatever just with the residue. How to get it done? “I asked Mr. DOE for his identification. And he pulled out his wallet, I observed a small plastic baggie fall out of his pocket…” You get the idea. easy, right? Best part is, those baggies can be found lots of places so you can always be ready. Don’t forget to wipe the baggie on the person’s skin after you arrest them because you want their DNA on the bag if they say you planted it or fight it in court.”
Other officers on the board responded by sharing similar stories about how they falsely arrest people who don’t adequately bow to their authority.
Later in the interview, when the officer was asked if planting evidence happened regularly within his department, he responded by saying,
Um, yes it does, on a regular basis. Probably every day in my shift. I work nights on the Road Patrol in a rough, um, mostly black neighborhood. Planting evidence and lying in your reports are just part of the game.
Then straight from the horses mouth, the officer said that this crooked behavior was actually encouraged by the drug war. Continuing his discussion about planting evidence, the officer said,
“Yes, all the time. It is something I see a lot of, whether it was from deputies, supervisors or undercovers and even investigators. It’s almost like you have no emotion with it, that they attach the bodies to it, they’re going to be out of jail tomorrow anyway; nothing is going to happen to them anyway. One of the consequences of the war on drugs is that police officers are pressured to make large numbers of arrests, and it’s easy for some of the less honest cops to plant evidence on innocent people. The drug war inevitably leads to crooked policing — and quotas further incentivize such practices. It doesn’t help that your higherups all did the same thing when they were on the road. It’s like a neverending cycle. Like how molested children accept that as okay behavior and begin molesting children themselves.”
When asked if he would get in trouble with the police department for framing people, the officer laughed and said that this type of behavior was actually encouraged.
“Our top boss, Sheriff Ric Bradshaw, supports this behavior and has for his entire career. As with anything, it depends on who you know in our agency. Last year, we had three deputies on the TAC unit, Kevin Drummond and Jarrod Foster, get caught falsifying information for a warrant. They got a pat on the back for a job well done. Just recently, we had a deputy, I think his name was Booth. He was caught completely lying on a car crash. Back a few more years, our Sheriff was involved a massive coverup of the death of two black deputies. He hid the report for years. This is only the beginning. The Sheriff has been involved in falsification of documents and his underling, Chief Deputy Michael Gauger, has been personally involved in an overtime scandal to steal money from the Sheriff’s Office. Does our Sheriff know about this behavior? Of course he does. We have even had a judge outright accuse my agency of committing fraud upon the court in a public hearing. She was one of the ones who saw through all the lying and covering up our department does to get away with the internal crime committed by deputies on a regular basis,” he said.
Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office is no special police department, and this officer is not just a bad apple. The problems that are discussed in this interview are systematic, and they occur in every town across the country.
Just this week, we exposed a police department in Missouri whose officers were forced to make arrests or faced losing their job. This leads to otherwise innocent people being charged on a regular basis.
Also this week, the Free Thought Project conducted a report to show what happens to cops who try to expose this corruption. Several officers within the Chicago police department were threatened with “going home in a casket” for exposing this same vile practice within their ranks.