THE INHERENTLY AND INSTITUTIONALLY RACIST PROBLEMATIC CONCEPT OF POLICE OFFICER “PROBABLE CAUSE”
The power to arrest is the power to destroy and kill.
One of the fundamental cornerstones of the criminal justice system is that a person can only be convicted if they have been found to be guilty “beyond a reasonable doubt.”
However that extremely rigorous standard of establishing a person’s guilt is severely and utterly pushed to the brink, when police officers all across America are routinely and purposefully selected and recruited from the great hoards and legions of angry, racist, vengeful, and hateful white men across America. (See FBI’s warning of white supremacists infiltrating law enforcement nearly forgotten at http://thegrio.com/2015/05/12/fbi-white-supremacists-law-enforcement/ and The KKK Has Infiltrated U.S. Police Departments for Decades at http://www.alternet.org/civil-liberties/kkk-has-infiltrated-us-police-departments-decades).
The entire concept of “probable cause” is problematic because it operates as a makeshift “shield” from any kind of liability, culpability, or ability for superiors of racist and malicious police officers who make an invalid or false arrest, thus ushering that targeted individual into the seemingly endless, bottomless, and hellacious world of the criminal justice system, which in this country often means being treated like you are already a convicted criminal, all the way from interrogation, booking/fingerprinting, arraignment, plea agreement, and trial.
And it does not help if you are non-white or a political dissident in this American criminal justice system, since statistics have already established that the likelihood of bad outcomes, unfair prosecutors and judges, goes up exponentially if you happen to be a person of color or political dissident.
To that end the racist police officer who initiates a person into this world of criminal justice, where your freedoms are taken away, you are jailed away from society, and you can easily be murdered within the system, needs to be heavily scrutinized, and his inherent power to arrest (destroy or kill) while being protected by this inherently problematic and institutionally racist concept of the defense of “probable case,” consequently demands to be investigated, de-constructed, revamped, re-analyzed, cleaned, and then put back together, much like a decrepit or old outdated automobile engine when it breaks down.
And unfortunately, with the passage of then Senator Joseph Biden and then President Bill Clinton’s purposefully unconstitutional 1994 Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act (“VCCLEA”) which actually operated to make it much easier and more likely that Americans all across the board will be arrested, detained, prosecuted, targeted, and convicted through a forced/coerced plea agreement or rigged trial by biased prosecutors and judges, than ever before, the statistics now showing that since their 1994 enactment of this federal law, a horrid and unforgivable 1/3 of all African-Americans, 1/6 of all Latinos, and 1/12 of all Whites in America have spent time under arrest or in jail/prison because of this purposefully designed “criminal justice system venus fly trap” (see Bill Clinton admits his crime law made mass incarceration ‘worse’ found at http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/clinton-admits-his-crime-bill-made-mass-incarceration-worse and countless other articles substantiating this) which feeds to purposefully profit-making prison industry and jails for profit, not to mention the countless “for profit” and myriad court ordered “treatment programs,” for such issues as Anger Management, Parenting Classes, Battery Programs, Drug Programs, Shoplifting Programs, Alcohol Programs, which corrupted judges all across America, whether they are presiding over family, criminal, IDV, or civil court, invariably sentence and relegate millions of innocent men and women to ever single day, with the sad truth that a great many of those corrupted judges stand to benefit financially from, if one digs or investigates deeply enough.
The concept of “Probable Cause” is defined in Black Letter Law in the Legal Dictionary on law.com at http://dictionary.law.com/Default.aspx?selected=1618 as “sufficient reason based upon known facts to believe a crime has been committed or that certain property is connected with a crime. Probable cause must exist for a law enforcement officer to make an arrest without a warrant, search without a warrant, or seize property in the belief the items were evidence of a crime. While some cases are easy (pistols and illicit drugs in plain sight, gunshots, a suspect running from a liquor store with a clerk screaming “help”), actions “typical” of drug dealers, burglars, prostitutes, thieves, or people with “guilt written across their faces,” are more difficult to categorize. “Probable cause” is often subjective, but if the police officer’s belief or even hunch was correct, finding stolen goods, the hidden weapon or drugs may be claimed as self-fulfilling proof of probable cause. Technically, probable cause has to exist prior to arrest, search or seizure.”
Cornell University Law School Legal Information Institute (“LII”) defines “probable cause” at https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/probable_cause as “a requirement found in the Fourth Amendment that must usually be met before police make an arrest, conduct a search, or receive a warrant. Courts usually find probable cause when there is a reasonable basis for believing that a crime may have been committed (for an arrest) or when evidence of the crime is present in the place to be searched (for a search). Under exigent circumstances, probable cause can also justify a warrantless search or seizure. Persons arrested without a warrant are required to be brought before a competent authority shortly after the arrest for a prompt judicial determination of probable cause.”
The Cornell LII goes on to further analyze the concept of probable cause, in that from a constitutional basis, “although the Fourth Amendment states that ‘no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause,’ it does not specify what ‘probable cause’ actually means. The Supreme Court has attempted to clarify the meaning of the term on several occasions, while recognizing that probable cause is a concept that is imprecise, fluid and very dependent on context. In Illinois v. Gates, the Court favored a flexible approach, viewing probable cause as a ‘practical, non-technical’ standard that calls upon the ‘factual and practical considerations of everyday life on which reasonable and prudent men […] act’. Courts often adopt a broader, more flexible view of probable cause when the alleged offenses are serious.”
Furthermore, the LII when discussing its application to arrests, states that “the Fourth Amendment requires that any arrest be based on probable cause, even when the arrest is made pursuant to an arrest warrant. Whether or not there is probable cause depends on the totality of the circumstances, meaning everything that the arresting officers know or reasonably believe at the time the arrest is made. However, probable cause remains a flexible concept, and what constitutes the ‘totality of the circumstances’ often depends on how the court interprets the reasonableness standard.
The LII goes on to state that “a lack of probable cause will render a warrantless arrest invalid, and any evidence resulting from that arrest (physical evidence, confessions, etc.) will have to be suppressed. A narrow exception applies when an arresting officer, as a result of a mistake by court employees, mistakenly and in good faith believes that a warrant has been issued. In this case, notwithstanding the lack of probable cause, the exclusionary rule does not apply and the evidence obtained may be admissible. Unlike court clerks, prosecutors are part of a law enforcement team and are not ‘court employees’ for purposes of the good-faith exception to the exclusionary rule.
The LII when discussing its applicability to Search Warrants, states that “probable cause exists when there is a fair probability that a search will result in evidence of a crime being discovered. For a warrantless search, probable cause can be established by in-court testimony after the search. In the case of a warrant search, however, an affidavit or recorded testimony must support the warrant by indicating on what basis probable cause exists and a judge may issue a search warrant if the affidavit in support of the warrant offers sufficient credible information to establish probable cause. There is a presumption that police officers are reliable sources of information, and affidavits in support of a warrant will often include their observations. When this is the case, the officers’ experience and training become relevant factors in assessing the existence of probable cause. Information from victims or witnesses, if included in an affidavit, may be important factors as well.”
The LII goes on to state that “The good faith exception that applies to arrests also applies to search warrants: when a defect renders a warrant constitutionally invalid, the evidence does not have to be suppressed if the officers acted in good faith. Courts evaluate an officer’s good faith by looking at the nature of the error and how the warrant was executed.”
What should immediately strike absolute abject terror into the hearts of the reader of the above mini-legal analysis should be the absolute abundance, amount, and flagrant use of the most abstract, non-defined, subjective, and loosely constructed words and phrases which undersigned has underlined, bolded, and italicized for added effect.
How in the world can we have a fair criminal justice system when the very gatekeepers (or entrappers) which are America’s police departments be granted complete and total immunity from investigation, prosecution, conviction, or civil liability legal retribution from the American public, when the entire “shield from liability” is the hitherto “grey concept” of “probable cause?”
As was stated above, the power to arrest is essentially the power to destroy, or for that matter, kill.
And if the deck is stacked against minorities and political dissidents in America wherein all of these subjective concepts making up the definition of “probable cause,” already problematic since the founding of this nation as enshrined in the 4th Amendment as the analysis above describes, then how can any minority or political dissident escape being arrested since the enactment of the 1994 VCCLEA and purposeful infiltration of America’s police departments by racist organizations such as the Ku Klux Klan and others, as documented and verified by our very own FBI?
The fact remains is that in order to err on the side of caution, therefore, and because of the horrendously unfixable consequences of being brought into the criminal justice system and its lifeteime effects on that individual, his family and loved ones, friends, career, personal and professional life, which can never be “cleansed” or “fixed,” even after exoneration, that if the police have any reason to believe that the targeted individual for arrest is innocent, THEN HE MIST NOT BE ARRESTED AND BE RELEASED IMMEDIATELY.
Certainly, some guilty people will go free.
But that is inherently a lot better than sending millions of innocent people to jail or to their death.
Indeed, the founding fathers insisted on that outcome, because of the arbitrary arrests, incarcerations, and destruction of their freedom-loving cohorts in British England.
And this is why they sacrificed themselves at the altar of the War for Independence, dying heroically and bloodily in the process.
This concept was literally worth their lives, and it is still worth our lives today, in the modern world.
To that end, if and when a police officer has been told by an alleged “victim of crime” that the accused party is innocent, then ALL INQUIRIES MUST CEASE, AND THE TARGETED PARTY MUST NOT BE ARRESTED, barring any other hardcore, physical, indisputable evidence to the contrary.
In other words, if there is no hard evidence to support or substantiate an arrest, then the targeted individual MUST BE LET GO AND NOT ARRESTED.
Unfortunately, in today’s criminal justice system, police officers rampantly are arresting anyone and everyone, even when the alleged victim has recanted, admitted he/she lied, or fabricated the entire incident.
And in the case of domestic violence cases, rabid feminists are calling for the heads of these often times innocent perpetrators, even when the female has declared the innocence of the man arrested and being prosecuted, in complete and total contravention to the law, 4th Amendment, and common human decency.
This is fundamentally un-American, and un-Constitutional, and demands reform, right now, and immediately.
If the Legislative or Executive Branches will do nothing about this, then it is incumbent upon the Judiciary to do so, with a reinterpretation and setting down of new and fresh decisions and orders and analyses on the concept of Probable Cause, and defining exactly what the limitations must be, using hard concerete principles grounded in fairness, justice and equity, and not in “grey words and phrases” having no basis in certainty or science, rife and susceptible for abuse by the worst and most racist segments of American society within the police departments and prosecutors’ offices.
The fact of the matter is that, owing to the purposefully vague, broad, and over encompassing language used to describe the concept of “probable cause” by the legislature, the executive branch and the judiciary for the past 200 years in this country’s history, the issues touched actually directly affect each and every constitutional amendment, because of the “totality of the circumstances” approach to analyzing the concept of “probable cause.”
If police officers are allowed to justify their false arrests and racist or political targeting of innocent individuals defending themselves by declaring that they looked at the “totality of the circumstances” then we the People also have the right to grill and investigate them and their actions using the “totality of the US Constitution” and the “totality of the Bill of Rights” to make damned sure that they are being honest, not racist, politically neutral, fair, just, and responsible throughout, especially when they have been given this awesome and huge power to arrest, and to kill us.
To that end this is why this complaint can not, and will not be limited or excluded in terms of weaker or stronger constitutional amendment violations, which most assuredly should be an integral component in the calculation by the judiciary in determining whether or not a police officer’s actions were lawful or just.
It is unacceptable and unforgivable that tens of millions of innocent men and women have been mercilessly arrested and killed by individuals over the past few hundreds years who have escaped any degree of legal or equitable culpability and liability using outdated and cowardly “weasel words” as the above legal analysis demonstrates, and therefore it is now incumbent, and past due time, for the judiciary to begin the process (if not complete) the definition of “probable cause” using concrete terminology, concise definitions, outline and delineate its scope and limitations, and go as far scientifically as possible to break it down to the fullest extent, so that it is no longer dishonestly and casually thrown around and used as an all-purpose shield by dishonest or racist law enforcement (and prosecutors) to justify their crimes against humanity.