Monday, October 19, 2009

Drug Asset Forfeiture Training

The following press release has been issued by the McHenry County State's Attorney's Office.

"McHenry County State’s Attorney, Louis A. Bianchi, announces that law enforcement training on Search & Seizure and Drug Asset Forfeitures will be held on Friday, October 30, 2009, at the State’s Attorney’s Office in the Grand Jury Room at 1:30 p.m. This training is open to all police departments in McHenry County and the Illinois State Police. The training will be presented by Assistant State’s Attorneys David Johnston and Kirk Chrzanowski."


My opinion is that the public also needs to know the gist of this training.

Stories are rampant about what the public might consider illegal search and seizure and the opportunity for law enforcement to seize assets in which they "consider" drug-related offenses and crimes.

Let's say you are driving down the road and have $20,000 cash in a bag in your car. There is nothing illegal about this.

Now let's say you get stopped and the officer talks you into allowing your car to be searched. They have various ways of doing this, including, "You don't have to allow me to search your car but, if you don't, you must have something to hide and I'll issue a dozen traffic tickets to you."

Then the cop finds your $20,000 and tells you, "You must be involved in a drug crime, since you have so much cash here. So I'm confiscating your cash and am going to let you go now, while I investigate." Oh, by the way, the cop might confiscate your car, too, so you'll get to walk away from the location of the traffic stop. And if you object? Care to face a Disorderly Conduct charge?

Think you'll ever see your cash again? Can you afford an attorney to get your cash back? Guess how much it will cost you to do so...

A. Just about $20,000. What a coincidence!

Maybe the SAO will conduct a class for the press and the public and explain how it has trained McHenry County law enforcement officers.


The Madd Bulldog said...

They wont find $20k in my rust bucket; but they'll sure find a bunch of other goodies I concider nnecessities in my life. DOH!

Another Lawyer said...

I think a better hypothetical would be 20k in the car, when they find a little cannabis on you, then they argue that since drug were involved the money must be related to the drugs.

Just sayin.

Daniel said...

I'd like to see these inept leo's convince me to let them search my vehicle. They are the most laughable in the community I've ever seen.