Supreme Court Bans Civil Seizures



  • Have not seen much about this around today, but SCOTUS ruled 9-0 that the civil seizures that state and local police/DAs have been using to strong-arm rob citizens have been declared unconstitutional.

    https://www.scotusblog.com/2019/02/opinion-analysis-eighth-amendments-ban-on-excessive-fines-applies-to-the-states/#more-279586

    This is a rare occurrence to see the conservative members take action against the police state in this country. And unanimous, no less.

    Wonder how many people will be filing lawsuits to recover their property (now illegally) seized by money-grabbing, power-thirsty cops through the years? The overreach and theft of property by some of these organizations is downright disgusting.



  • Absolutely amazing news. I look forward to police agencies at every level getting flipped on their heads over this.



  • It is absolutely amazing how all of this is legally done by cops. It falls under some archaic rules originally written to seize property from pirates. Yes, I said pirates, as in criminals in wooden ships and black flags. Apparently under this old statute a law enforcement officer has the right to deem any property an asset used in a criminal conspiracy, then seize the property. The Federal government then files charges against THE PROPERTY. Not the person having the property seized, but the property itself. Since the charges are against things and not people, the concepts of reasonable doubt, innocent-til-guilty, etc don't apply. And the Fed then agrees to give a large portion of the seized property back to the local/state jurisdiction, thus incentivizing the behavior.

    From what I am reading, this doesn't actually stop them from doing it. But what it does do is to take away some of the incentive for cops to do it. Essentially SCOTUS declared that the value seized can't exceed the maximum fine that could have been applied for the given crime. So if they seize it, at the end there is legal precedent to claim excessive penalty via the 14th amendment.

    Not sure how this will actually change things. Foreseeing the actual effects in real-life practice is always the unknown in such game-changing SCOTUS rulings. But I am going to celebrate ANY action that serves to put a check on our out-of-control police system.





  • Crazy this is not news everywhere

    Edit* I left out the word “not”



  • What about game laws? Game Wardens do a lot of searches and seizures.



  • It'll be interesting to see where the municipalities make up the revenue shortfall.

    Maybe we'll be in for more speed traps..

    flyinphill I've read some crazy stuff but cash as a defendant, that's pretty close to the top.



  • @martino1 said in Supreme Court Bans Civil Seizures:

    It'll be interesting to see where the municipalities make up the revenue shortfall.

    Maybe we'll be in for more speed traps.

    Many PD's budgets are determined by the amount of stuff they can 'legally' steal.

    99% of the lawyers make the rest look bad.

    Samuel Langhorne Clemens (Mark Twain): "Lawyers are like other people--fools on the average; but it is easier for an ass to succeed in that trade than any other."

    Mark Twain was at a dinner party where he gave one of his customary after-dinner speeches. When he had finished a prominent lawyer stood up, shoved his hands in his pockets and said, "Doesn't it strike this company as unusual that a professional humorist should be so funny?"

    Mark Twain came back with, "Doesn't it strike this company as unusual that a lawyer should have both hands in his own pockets?"

    The judicial process is like a cow. The public is impaled on its horns, the government has it by the tail, and all the while the lawyers are milking it.