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Old April 2 2012, 09:31 PM   #1
zephramc's Avatar
Location: California
Illegal Traffic Stop for Star Trek Fan?

Last December, filmmaker Terrance Huff and his friend Jon Seaton were returning to Ohio after attending a "Star Trek" convention in St. Louis. As they passed through a small town in Illinois, a police officer, Michael Reichert, pulled Huff's red PT Cruiser over to the side of the road, allegedly for an unsafe lane change. Over the next hour, Reichert interrogated the two men, employing a variety of police tactics civil rights attorneys say were aimed at tricking them into giving up their Fourth Amendment rights. Reichert conducted a sweep of Huff's car with a K-9 dog, then searched Huff's car by hand. Ultimately, he sent Huff and Seaton on their way with a warning.

Earlier this month, Huff posted to YouTube audio and video footage of the stop taken from Reichert's dashboard camera. No shots were fired in the incident. No one was beaten, arrested or even handcuffed. Reichert found no measurable amount of contraband in Huff's car. But Huff's 17-and-a-half minute video raises important questions about law enforcement and the criminal justice system, including the Fourth and Fifth Amendments, the drug war, profiling and why it's so difficult to take problematic cops out of the police force.
There's a video in the HuffPo article. It's long (17 mins), but definitely worth watching.

I agree with Mr. Huff in that he was a victim of a bad cop. He definitely kept his cool through the whole thing. The video he made seems pretty damning in regard to Officer Reichert. Probably won't get him thrown off the force unfortunately. If being convicted for a federal offense doesn't cause him to lose his job, what would?

I wonder if Mr. Huff posts here? If so, I'm sorry you had to go through that, but you definitely made your point as far as I'm concerned.
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Old April 2 2012, 10:13 PM   #2
Vice Admiral
scotpens's Avatar
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Re: Illegal Traffic Stop for Star Trek Fan?

Even on a section of highway known for being a drug corridor, and even if a cop is prone to abusing his authority, he isn't going to dish out that kind of unwarranted and intimidating treatment to every single citizen he stops for an (alleged) routine traffic violation. One wonders why Mr. Huff got singled out for such treatment. Did he have Star Trek bumper stickers all over his car? Maybe the officer is prejudiced against geeks.
“All the universe or nothingness. Which shall it be, Passworthy? Which shall it be?”
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Old April 2 2012, 10:47 PM   #3
Re: Illegal Traffic Stop for Star Trek Fan?

Were they dressed up as trekkies?
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Old April 2 2012, 11:02 PM   #4
zephramc's Avatar
Location: California
Re: Illegal Traffic Stop for Star Trek Fan?

Not in the video. The video (from the police cruiser) starts right when Huff is pulled over. It's been edited and has Huff narrating the events.
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