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Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:05 PM

In the city of Ferguson, nearly everyone is a wanted criminal.


That may seem like hyperbole, but it is a literal fact. In Ferguson -- a city with a population of 21,000 -- 16,000 people have outstanding arrest warrants, meaning that they are currently actively wanted by the police. In other words, if you were to take four people at random, the Ferguson police would consider three of them fugitives.

That statistic should be truly shocking. Yet in the wake of the Department of Justice's withering report on the city's policing practices, it has gone almost entirely unmentioned. News reports and analysis have focused on the racism discovered in departmental emails, and the gangsterish financial "shakedown" methods deployed against African Americans. In doing so, they have missed the full picture of Ferguson's operation, which reveals a totalizing police regime beyond any of Kafka's ghastliest nightmares.

The Department of Justice's 102-page report is a rich source of damning facts about the Ferguson criminal justice system. But tucked halfway in and passed over quickly is a truly revelatory set of figures: the arrest warrant data for the Ferguson Municipal Court.

It turns out that nearly everyone in the city is wanted for something. Even internal police department communications found the number of arrest warrants to be "staggering". By December of 2014, "over 16,000 people had outstanding arrest warrants that had been issued by the court." The report makes clear that this refers to individual people, rather than cases (i.e. people with many cases are not being counted multiple times). However, if we do look at the number of cases, the portrait is even starker. In 2013, 32,975 offenses had associated warrants, so that there were 1.5 offenses for every city resident.




MORE:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/nathan-robinson/the-shocking-finding-from-the-doj-ferguson_b_6858388.html

34 replies, 2440 views

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Reply In the city of Ferguson, nearly everyone is a wanted criminal. (Original post)
kpete Mar 2015 OP
G_j Mar 2015 #1
notadmblnd Mar 2015 #2
G_j Mar 2015 #3
phil89 Mar 2015 #14
bettyellen Mar 2015 #15
jwirr Mar 2015 #19
Tsiyu Mar 2015 #23
gollygee Mar 2015 #26
NoJusticeNoPeace Mar 2015 #28
Trillo Mar 2015 #4
questionseverything Mar 2015 #5
Downwinder Mar 2015 #6
annabanana Mar 2015 #18
jwirr Mar 2015 #21
Downwinder Mar 2015 #22
Lucky Luciano Mar 2015 #25
Erich Bloodaxe BSN Mar 2015 #7
pintobean Mar 2015 #8
Tsiyu Mar 2015 #10
pintobean Mar 2015 #13
Tsiyu Mar 2015 #17
pintobean Mar 2015 #24
gopiscrap Mar 2015 #32
blm Mar 2015 #9
KG Mar 2015 #11
grasswire Mar 2015 #12
gordianot Mar 2015 #16
gopiscrap Mar 2015 #31
gordianot Mar 2015 #33
bonniebgood Mar 2015 #20
gopiscrap Mar 2015 #30
arcane1 Mar 2015 #27
gopiscrap Mar 2015 #29
romanic Mar 2015 #34

Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:07 PM

1. wow! nt

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:10 PM

2. 80% of the population! That's incredible

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:15 PM

3. and wouldn't that make someone reluctant

to register and vote?

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Response to G_j (Reply #3)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:14 PM

14. I'm not sure having wanted criminals

 

vote is a good thing.

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Response to phil89 (Reply #14)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:16 PM

15. Wow. Deprive people of the vote for misdemeanor crimes who can't pay? Lovely.

 

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Response to phil89 (Reply #14)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:46 PM

19. "Wanted criminals"? How many of them are truly criminals in a city that has been targeting them

for things that most of us do with no consequences all the time. Just to get the money to pay for the city government.

What needs to be done is that an independent committee should review them and throw away all those based on piddly offenses. Get rid of all those except those that involve real crimes - robbery, murder, assault, etc.

This police force was not honest nor were they working for the good of the community so their work cannot be trusted. Starting over is the only way to settle this.

And as to your not being sure having wanted criminals is a good thing. How to you feel about the bush era war criminals still being able to vote?

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Response to phil89 (Reply #14)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 02:42 PM

23. So if you get a parking ticket or a speeding ticket

you shouldn't be allowed to vote?

Because the majority of these warrants were issued for people who couldn't pay their fines for simple misdemeanors and traffic violations.

Get some reading under your belt about the situation, because your comment does not reflect well on your awareness of the actual situation in Ferguson, but indicates you may have an authoritarian mindset - the same mindset that caused this mess in the first place.

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Response to phil89 (Reply #14)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 04:54 PM

26. Very convenient

to turn almost everyone who is African American into a "wanted criminal" so they can't vote.

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Response to phil89 (Reply #14)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 04:57 PM

28. That is how it works in Jim Crow America, so you approve?

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:16 PM

4. It is a major travesty.

I imagine it would be handy for cops to be able to stop someone and legally be able to arrest most of them because 75% have an existing "outstanding warrant". I guess humans don't need strong walls and iron bars to operate a prison.

I really hope the people of Ferguson can find some healing, it will likely take some time.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:21 PM

5. so why aren't the officials in jail?

these officials have criminally conspired for years against these people,,,why are they walking away with severance packages?

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:27 PM

6. On some set date everyone should show up at the PD and turn

themselves in. That should crash the system.

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Response to Downwinder (Reply #6)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:41 PM

18. It would make great tv, that's for sure. . . n/t

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Response to annabanana (Reply #18)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:49 PM

21. And probably shut down the town as many would have to take time off from work to be there. That

would show them!

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Response to annabanana (Reply #18)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:49 PM

22. A protest they can't complain about.

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Response to Downwinder (Reply #6)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 04:50 PM

25. Hah! That would be great! nt

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:29 PM

7. Time to start fresh and dismiss the vast majority of the charges resulting in 'outstanding warrants'

Leave in place the ones for violence or grand theft, maybe, but I'm assuming almost all of them are for missed court dates, unpaid fines, etc.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:36 PM

8. I doubt that that's true

16,000 is a ridiculous amount, but I doubt they are all from Ferguson. Anyone can have outstanding warrants in Ferguson, regardless of where they live. It's more likely that those with outstanding warrants live outside the city, where FPD can't just show up at their door.

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Response to pintobean (Reply #8)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:46 PM

10. Do you also doubt that it's true they charged Henry Davis

with "destruction of official property" because he was so careless and irresponsible, he got blood on the uniforms of the four Ferguson police officers who beat him to a pulp?

You seem to be a huge apologist for Ferguson. I don't understand your attitude, but I find it very frightening. If these numbers aren't shocking to you, then I do also feel very sorry for you.

From the article:

To give some context as to how truly extreme this is, a comparison may be useful. In 2014, the Boston Municipal Court System, for a city of 645,000 people, issued about 2,300 criminal warrants. The Ferguson Municipal Court issued 9,000, for a population 1/30th the size of Boston's.



But, no big deal, right pintobean?



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Response to Tsiyu (Reply #10)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:10 PM

13. No, not at all

And I'm certainly not apologizing for what Ferguson has done. I simply pointed out a flaw in the premiss in the OP. Yes, the numbers are shocking, but it wasn't just being done to their own residents. Municipalities in St. Louis County are more likely to give their own residents a break during a traffic stop; especially if that's how they get much of their revenue.

Anyone who lives anywhere near here knows this. You can drive for 10 minutes in the county and pass through two dozen munies. In some, even if you obey the laws, you can get pulled over and issued bogus tickets. Usually, the young are targeted. In some like Ferguson, blacks are targeted.

If you don't like my input, you can use ignore.

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Response to pintobean (Reply #13)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:28 PM

17. Lol


If you don't like my input, you can use ignore.

It's already been established that Ferguson issued approximately 3 warrants per FERGUSON HOUSEHOLD per year. These are statistics for the residents of Ferguson, not for out-of-towners.

If you have evidence to the contrary, please provide a link.

Your speculation - or wishful thinking - is useless here

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Response to Tsiyu (Reply #17)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 03:00 PM

24. Well, the only one you cited is not a Ferguson resident

The booking officer had no other reason to hold Davis, who ended up in Ferguson only because he missed the exit for St. Charles and then pulled off the highway because the rain was so heavy he could not see to drive. The cop who had pulled up behind him must have run his license plate and assumed he was that other Henry Davis. Davis said the cop approached his vehicle, grabbed his cellphone from his hand, cuffed him and placed him in the back seat of the patrol car, without a word of explanation.


http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/08/15/the-day-ferguson-cops-were-caught-in-a-bloody-lie.html

Not that it really matters where the victim is from. It doesn't really matter where any of the victims are from. I just found the premiss that they were all Ferguson residents to be ridiculous.
If you want to rely on the interpretations made on a student's blog, go ahead. I believe the people that I know who live in and around Ferguson, as well as my own experiences with other municipalities in St. Louis County.

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Response to Tsiyu (Reply #17)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 05:08 PM

32. Holy shit!

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:46 PM

9. This is what widespread institutionalized racism looks like

on a spreadsheet.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:46 PM

11. proto-police city-state

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 12:48 PM

12. the new slavery

How many other towns are similarly afflicted, with PDs reigning over the citizens who can't ever seem to escape?

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:21 PM

16. Impressive, this type of governance needs a name.

Possibilities; Local Police State, Industrial Judicial Criminal Complex, etc. etc.

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Response to gordianot (Reply #16)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 05:07 PM

31. How about racist and corrupt as fuck?

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Response to gopiscrap (Reply #31)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 07:12 PM

33. That works.

Plenty more where that came from it is a shame that they had to kill an unarmed kid before it came to light. What that department did after they killed Michael Brown was organized and deliberate.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 01:47 PM

20. According to the Justice Department Report and the injustices

racism found, all the false arrest and warrants should be null and void. Amnesty for 100% of Ferguson citizens period.

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Response to bonniebgood (Reply #20)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 05:06 PM

30. agreed

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 04:55 PM

27. Another day in the Land of the "Free"

 

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 05:05 PM

29. That's fucked up

the entire police force, prosecutorial force and judiciary of this hell hole needs to go!

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Mar 15, 2015, 07:18 PM

34. Yikes.

I bet a majority of them are non-violent offences too. Not only is it racial in nature, it's pure greed for the city government in pursuit of revenue. smh

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