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Transportation Government Privacy

Texas Drivers Stopped At Roadblock, Asked For Saliva, Blood 783

Posted by Soulskill
from the also-need-an-eyeball-scraping-and-a-chunk-of-lung dept.
schwit1 writes "Some drivers along a busy Fort Worth street on Friday were stopped at a police roadblock and directed into a parking lot, where they were asked by federal contractors for samples of their breath, saliva and even blood. It was part of a government research study aimed at determining the number of drunken or drug-impaired drivers.The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which is spending $7.9 million on the survey over three years, said participation was '100 percent voluntary' and anonymous. The 'participants' hardly agree."
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Texas Drivers Stopped At Roadblock, Asked For Saliva, Blood

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  • Sure (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @01:18AM (#45470131)

    But those come after the semen and stool samples, right?

  • I do not consent (Score:5, Insightful)

    by NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @01:26AM (#45470161)
    I do not consent to living in a police state.
    I do not consent to "federal contractors".

    I DO NOT CONSENT

    OR:

    "These are not the droids you're looking for."
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @01:26AM (#45470165) Journal
    Don't let the fact that an armed man and his buddies just forced you off the road, in the dark, convey any kind of misleading impression about the voluntariness of what you are about to do the sensible thing and agree to....
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @03:52AM (#45470707)

      It was a running (bad) joke in TV/films of the 1970s/80s that muggers would frequently 'suggest' in very moderate and 'reasonable' language that their victims might like to consider giving them a 'donation'. The idea was that the situation was so clear, that the actual threat could be left implicit, as if this somehow reduced the criminality, or made the victim some kind of accomplice.

      Of course, the mugger would ensure the victim was aware that he had a weapon (frequently dual use, like a screw-driver), so that a classic power game played out.

      Now we see the police in the USA using the SAME tactic, but with one more refinement- the use of proxies/mercenaries/'contractors' to do the actual 'mugging' of citizens Human Rights, while the uniformed goons themselves stand to the side as 'back-up'.

      Let me ask you all a question. Would you prefer your police-state to be upfront and honest, like say Stalinist East Germany, or Obama style, where everyone pretends the man with the gun and uniform who is forcing you do act against your will is just a friendly, harmless 'servant' of the people.

      Would you prefer your mugger to be some lone pathetic loser, or a member of a well organised gang whose power and influence reaches into ever aspect of your city's administration and law enforcement? Team Obama not only abuses you, it pays massive amounts to PR operations so stories of the abuse are ignored or dismissed as untrue by your fellow sheeple.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @01:31AM (#45470183)
    The police are unwitting participants in this experiment. Gathering data on intoxication is just the cover story. The real experiment is to see whether Texas is as tough as they talk, or if they're going to bitch out and take this shit. If the result is positive, somebody will roll up to the roadblock with an AR-15 and pop a few skulls. But my money's on the pigs not having anything to worry about, 'cause Texas is full of trash-talkin' BITCHEZZZ!
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @03:22AM (#45470619)

      The police are unwitting participants in this experiment. Gathering data on intoxication is just the cover story. The real experiment is to see whether Texas is as tough as they talk, or if they're going to bitch out and take this shit. If the result is positive, somebody will roll up to the roadblock with an AR-15 and pop a few skulls. But my money's on the pigs not having anything to worry about, 'cause Texas is full of trash-talkin' BITCHEZZZ!

      Your snarky hate-inciting comments aside.....

      Local Fort Worth Police were involved, but they were off duty. I seriously doubt they were "unwitting". I would think that police departments have internal rules or state laws that have to be followed regarding notification to the department of off duty employment by officers.

      These off duty cops might have flagrantly violated a state law by doing this, even while off duty. At the state level there is a state law that forbids involuntary traffic stops by police for the purposes of "checking everyone out as they go by" or for stuff like this "study". The usual legal reasons in Texas for traffic stops are still allowed.

      According to tonight's TV news report, it seems like the Fort Worth City Council was not aware these cops were participating in this traffic stop. That "unawareness" is now getting those cops that worked the stop tossed into an investigation by the City Council. I hope that investigation does not get "disappeared"; I really hope something is done locally. I hope the local citizenry make an effort to pressure on the local TV stations to investigate this matter.

  • by Somebody Is Using My (985418) on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @01:31AM (#45470189) Homepage

    Did we make sure to get blood and saliva samples from the police officers and federal contractors as well?

    I'd like to make sure that my samples aren't being mishandled due to drug- or alcohol-induced ineptitude.

    I think this study was less to count the number of drunk drivers and more as a test to see how willing people are to give up their precious bodily fluids when demanded to do so by some random authority. Sort of checking to see if the frog has been boiled yet. Fortunately, it sounds as if some of those frogs were willing to still jump a little bit, as at least the named driver refused to everything but a breathalyzer.

  • by Tablizer (95088) on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @02:05AM (#45470323) Homepage Journal

    Texas and the Feds. What could possibly go wrong?

  • by tlambert (566799) on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @03:22AM (#45470615)

    There were no on-duty police officers involved ...just off-duty officers and government contractors, illegally distrupting traffic, illegally collecting passive sensor data, even when consent was declined, and collecting a bunch of other information if you were willing to give it for free (the breathalyzer) or willing to be paid $10, $50, or $60, depending on how intrusive you let them get in exchange for money.

    Everything about it was illegal; this was not a standard DUI checkpoint which contractors "embraced and extended", this was private citizens pulling over private citizens and collecting at least a minimum amount of data without consent.

    This is a civil rights violation, and for each count where consent was not given after the fact, worth 20 years in a Federal prison.

  • by eviljav (68734) on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @03:40AM (#45470665)

    Isn't this called kidnapping?

  • by gravis777 (123605) on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @09:59AM (#45472045)

    Yeah, I know that this is what the first paragraph in the article says, but I have to wonder why KXAS even wrote that. The rest of the article specifically says the Fort Worth Police had no involvement - it was ran by the federal government, and they hired a few off-duty police officers - and that the Fort Worth Police was conducting an internal investigation about it.

    This is again about the Federal Government overstepping their authority, and the federal government closing down a city road without consulting local law enforcement is horrible. The cities should really sue the federal government over this.

    Moreso, Beach Street is an extreamely busy street, expecially now with all the construction in the area. The video says this is on the border of Fort Worth and Haltom City, and the video seems to confirm that area. This is a very busy area - I am usually over here a few times a month. The federal government closing off this area is inexcusable. I am sure that if someone had of called the FWPD about this when it was happening, the NHTSA contractors would have been arrested, and the off-duty officers placed on administrative leave - Fort Worth doesn't put up with that kind of crap.

  • by Marrow (195242) on Wednesday November 20, 2013 @10:06AM (#45472093)

    stopped in these situations. What do they know their plates and let them pass? Or do they have a special sticker in their window?

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