Tag Archives: Drug war

At Least Four Killed by Police Doing Drug Enforcement Actions So Far This Month | July 09

From Drug War Chronicle, Issue #594, 7/17/09

Authorities in Livingston Parish, Louisiana say a deputy acted appropriately in trying to arrest a man at a traffic stop who died while in custody.  Dash cam video of deadly traffic stop released – Updated: July 10, 2009 07:21 AM

LIVINGSTON, LA (WAFB) – The Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office has released the dash cam video of a deadly traffic stop and in doing so said its deputies followed procedure.

The video shows Deputy Chris Sturdivant as he pulls over 42-year-old Adam Stogner. The tape starts with the deputy asking Stogner for his license. It ends with an officer asking the man if he’s still breathing.

Chief Deputy Jason Ard says when the video starts Adam Stogner did not put his truck in park. They say that backs up the reason he was pulled over. The deputy believed he was impaired. On the tape, there is audio of the deputy asking for Stogner’s license. “What you got in your hand? the deputy then asks. “Give me your hand,” he demands. “I don’t have nothing in my hand,” Stogner responds. “I swear to you.”

The media watched the video with Ard and several other law enforcement agents. “Pay attention to the subject’s right hand,” Ard said. On the dash cam video, the deputy tells Stogner to open his hand. Deputies say they believe Stogner was holding a baggy of narcotics in his right hand. The tape shows Stogner moving something from one hand to the other and placing it in his mouth. “Did you see him put it in his mouth? Ard asks. “Right there and this is where the struggle starts,” he points out. “Spit it out!” the deputy tells Stogner.

All this is happening while the deputy was trying to handcuff the man. The deputy does get one cuff on, but because the two seem to be in a wrestling match, Ard says that loose cuff can be a weapon. At several points, there are images of what looks like the deputy hitting Stogner. The sheriff’s office says another time it looks like Stogner is crawling toward the interstate with the deputy on his back. And again, it appears the deputy hits the man.

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Filed under Civil Liberties, Civil Rights, Criminal Justice, Drug Policy, Police Abuse|Brutality|Killings

Walter Cronkite on the United States’ “War on Drugs” | “The Drug Dilemma: War or Peace?”

Walter Leland Cronkite, Jr. | November 4, 1916 – July 17, 2009

Walter Leland Cronkite, Jr. | November 4, 1916 – July 17, 2009

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Filed under American Culture, Drug Policy, The Press

American Violet

Based on true events in the midst of the 2000 election, AMERICAN VIOLET tells the astonishing story of Dee Roberts (critically hailed newcomer Nicole Beharie), a 24 year-old African American single mother of four young girls living in a small Texas town who is barely making ends meet on a waitress salary and government subsidies.


On an early November morning while Dee works a shift at the local diner, the powerful local district attorney (Academy Award® nominee Michael OKeefe) leads an extensive drug bust, sweeping her Arlington Springs housing project with military precision. Police drag Dee from work in handcuffs, dumping her in the squalor of the womens county prison. Indicted based on the uncorroborated word of a single and dubious police informant facing his own drug charges, Dee soon discovers she has been charged as a drug dealer.

Alfre Woodard and Nicole Beharie

Alfre Woodard and Nicole Beharie

Even though Dee has no prior drug record and no drugs were found on her in the raid or any subsequent searches, she is offered a hellish choice: plead guilty and go home as a convicted felon or remain in prison and fight the charges thus, jeopardizing her custody and risking a long prison sentence.

Despite the urgings of her mother (Academy Award® nominee Alfre Woodard), and with her freedom and the custody of her children at stake, she chooses to fight the district attorney and the unyielding criminal justice system he represents. Joined in an unlikely alliance with an ACLU attorney (Tim Blake Nelson) and former local narcotics officer (Will Patton), Dee risks everything in a battle that forever changes her life and the Texas justice system. AMERICAN VIOLET also stars Emmy Award® winner Charles S. Dutton and Xzibit.

American Violet will be shown at the Philadelphia Film Festival, April 4 & 5 before nationwide release Apr 17.

For more information – http://www.americanviolet.com/

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Filed under Black Politics, Civil Liberties, Civil Rights, Criminal Justice, Drug Policy