Good site for getting to know your rights
A controversial police raid of the popular Capitol Hemp stores in Washington, D.C. has become more interesting with the release of the affidavit filed by an undercover officer seeking a judge’s approval to search the premises for evidence of drug paraphernalia distribution. Police allege that water pipes and other tobacco accessories sold at the stores were intended for illegal use, and their evidence includes the fact that Capitol Hemp sold Flex Your Rights DVDs!
Check out this section from the search warrant affidavit, available in full at DCist:
4. While your Affiant was looking at the smoking devices U/C [redacted] observed a DVD that was for sale entitled "10 Rules for Dealing with Police". The DVD gave the following listed topics that were covered as:
A. Deal with traffic stops, street stops and police at your door.
B. Know your rights and maintain your cool, and;
C. Avoid common police tricks and prevent humiliating searches.
Your Affiant notes that while this DVD is informative for any citizen, when introduced into a store that promotes the use of a controlled substance this DVD becomes a tool for deceiving law enforcement to keep from being arrested. The typical citizen would not need to know detailed information as to US Supreme Court case law regarding search and seizure because they are not transporting illegal substances in fear of being caught.
This is absurd, and anyone who's seen the film knows how off target this characterization is. 10 Rules for Dealing with Police shows how everyday people can sometimes face uncomfortable encounters with police, and every citizen is better off understanding their constitutional rights. There is nothing in the video that a "typical citizen would not need to know," because every citizen has a chance of having an encounter with police at some point in their lives.
I'm pleased to discover that law enforcement and legal scholars share our belief in the importance of making this material available to the public. We’ve received more orders from police departments than hemp stores, and I'm proud that our film has helped foster positive collaborations between police and the communities they serve. The film is also a popular tool among police trainers, who use it to educate officers about respecting constitutional rights and to appreciate how they're perceived by the public they serve.
That's why I'm disappointed to hear our material described as "a tool for deceiving law enforcement." When police use it in criminal procedure courses at the academy, that doesn't make it a tool for arresting people any more than a hemp store customer might use it to trick cops. The Bill of Rights is not a trick or a loophole to protect criminals. It's the highest law of the land. It's also a template for good police work and good citizenship. That's what Flex Your Rights is all about.
Anyone who's watched 10 Rules for Dealing with Police will likely agree that both police and the public stand to benefit when more people learn the film's lessons. Flex Your Rights has seen how numerous institutions, ranging from police departments to high schools to hemp stores, all have a common interest and unique ability to reach specific audiences with this important information. No one should ever be afraid to share it in fear that they'll be accused of condoning criminal activity. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6hzZclbjLk&feature=player_embeddedhttp://youtu.be/WTeH9D_tN-khttp://youtu.be/4v1vU2uK7Zshttp://flexyourrights.org/