Policies
Cops could get charged as dealers? E-mail
Written by APB Staff   
A provision of the Michigan medical marijuana law prohibits police from seizing pot possessed by licensed medical marijuana patients. But State Attorney General Bill Schuette, in an opinion released recently, wrote that the provision is invalid because marijuana is illegal under federal law. If police follow the state law and actually return medical marijuana to licensed patients, those officers could be prosecuted as dope dealers.
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Feds want authority to deny existence of docs E-mail
Written by APB Staff   
The following is posted on the official web site of the Obama Administration - www.whitehouse.gov: "President Obama has committed to making his administration the most open and transparent in history, and WhiteHouse.gov will play a major role in delivering on that promise. The President's executive orders and proclamations will be published for everyone to review, and that's just the beginning of the efforts to provide a window for all Americans into the business of the government."

But that's what they say. The question of what federal officials actually do is a different proposition entirely.

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Doing right, even when you have nothing E-mail
Written by APB Staff   
According to a recent article in the Boston Herald, the more "eyes and ears" out there, the better. What else can you say about a story where two homeless guys appear to have foiled an arson?

An MBTA Transit Police officer and a pair of down-and-out panhandlers near the commuter hub of South Station combined to thwart an alleged arson-for-hire scheme on Cape Cod, which led to the arrest of a suspect.

Benjamin Parker, 26, was arrested and charged with attempted arson, conspiracy and possession of an explosive device. According to the article, Parker had concocted an elaborate scheme to pay two homeless men $1,100 to set fire to a single-family home in the town of Harwich on Cape Cod.

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Working better with young people E-mail
At a recent session for recruits enrolled in a training academy, one of the instructors had this to say to the students in the class: "What I am telling you today we did not get when we were in the academy. You're lucky because now you've got a leg up in dealing with kids out on the street. Knowing this stuff makes working with youngsters easier and less stressful and believe me, they can be stressful."

This instructor was as right as he was unusual; unusual because training in best practices so cops can better work with young people is the exception rather than the rule.

A just released report by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) indicates that despite the pressing need, very few law enforcement agencies offer training to their sworn personnel on the best and most effective ways to deal with young people.

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Cops forced to go it alone on meth cleanups E-mail
Written by APB Staff   
There's never been a more destructive drug than methamphetamine. It destroys both those who use the narcotic and the areas where it's manufactured.

Kansas City P.D. Sgt. Tim Witcig knows all about meth and the impact it has on public safety. He also knows just what kind of disaster is looming on the horizon after Congress decided earlier this year to eliminate funding to clean up methamphetamine labs.

Law enforcement agencies just don't have the kind of funds required for meth lab clean-ups. As a result, local law enforcement depended heavily on federal help in terms of funding to get the job done. That help is no longer forthcoming, and Witcig and his team are doing the best they can to pick up the slack.

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Delaying brain damage in cardiac arrest victims E-mail
Written by APB Staff   

After a heart attack victim stops breathing, a process of irreversible brain damage starts to occur within 3 to 4 minutes. What if there was a way prevent brain damage - for up to an hour? Perhaps there is. While researching cardiac arrest, Philadelphia area resident Jeffrey Dobkin, read about a boy drowning in icy waters. Although submerged for over half an hour, the boy was rescued, resuscitated, and recovered completely. No brain damage.

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Line up procedures need a tune up E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   

The last thing most people want to hear about after the Casey Anthony verdict is wrongful convictions. But despite the emotions generated by high profile, media-event criminal trials, law enforcement groups in Florida recently encouraged agencies to adopt standard line-up procedures to reduce errors and lawsuits. Law enforcement agencies statewide are being asked to adopt new standards for using eyewitnesses to identify crime suspects, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and other organizations recently announced.

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Dealers to pay costs of their arrest E-mail
Written by Mark Nichols   
About a year ago, Chris Jensen, a 35-year-old patrolman with the Elgin, Illinois Police Department, had an idea. Why not charge drug dealers for the cost of their arrest?

Ten months later, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn came to the Elgin police station and, as 100 people looked on, he signed Jensen's idea into state law.

Now, anyone in Illinois convicted of delivering or selling controlled substances can be fined for the costs associated with their arrest.

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With new gadgets, cops will never forget a face E-mail
Written by APB Staff   
According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, dozens of law-enforcement agencies from Massachusetts to Arizona are preparing to equip their officers with controversial hand-held facial-recognition devices as soon as this month.

The device in question is an iPhone app and associated device made by BI2 Technologies of Plymouth, Massachusetts.

With the device attached to an iPhone, an officer can take a picture of a face from up to five feet away, or scan a person's irises from up to six inches away. Officers can then use that data to do a search to see if there is a match with a database of people suspected of terrorism or to see if they have criminal records.

The new gadget even collects fingerprints.

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