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Don’t trust imperfect police with license-tag readers

Editor, The Beacon:

Does anybody believe in the Constitution anymore?

Please read my objection:

In a perfect world, police officers would be 100 percent honest and incorruptible. Unfortunately, we do not live in a perfect world.

Police officers do commit infractions and crimes; some are minor; others, like the case of girls who were raped by officers, or the officers who stole from or killed people for drugs, are major disgusting acts.

Do not ask me what the percentage is of officers who are corrupted; it really doesn’t matter. Point being, no matter how small the percentage is, I don’t think that girls who were raped or assaulted by police would really care if you tell them how small the corrupt-police-officer percentage is.

I’m sure if we wanted to we could come up with the percentage, whatever the percentage would be. I know it would be greater than the percentage of criminals who are supposedly caught through the police using license-plate readers. That information is, in fact, an extremely small percentage.

Some police chiefs, like Chitwood of Volusia County and others, would have you believe this is a wonderful crime-fighting tool. It is not.

He and others who believe in plate-readers are wearing blinders; they refuse to understand the “end result does not justify the means.”

We in this country should be free to travel without having the fear that some corrupt officer has obtained information about us, which they may use illegally for any reason, even if they don’t like our attitude.

The police must have search warrants to enter our home. If the end justifies the means, then how many more crooks and criminals could they catch if they could simply walk into our homes, or simply stop and search people.

There was a reason for the Constitution. If I’m driving down the road and have a legal, properly registered up-to-date plate, then that should be sufficient for any law-enforcement agency.

(Yes, I was in fact stopped by a “cop” who read my tag and pulled me over using the pretense that I had gone over the white line at an intersection. I can go into detail, but no, I am not a wanted criminal and, no, he did not arrest or ticket me. This would be just one example of minor corruption.)

We have to draw the line somewhere, and freedom to travel without fear is just as important as catching so-called criminals.

There really is no justification that can be used to invade our privacy like this. And these people, like Chitwood, who care nothing about people’s rights or freedoms, disgust me.

P.S.: Even if the cops are decent, the fact is, if a police officer sees a pretty girl he might want to meet, don’t you think for a minute he won’t use a tag scanner to find out where she lives? Even if his intentions are not criminal, he should not have this ability.

Paul Stevenson