Highway-Robbing Highway Patrolmen

  • Aired:  07/22/14
  •  | Views: 58,321

Jordan Klepper investigates a common practice called civil forfeiture, which involves police officers around the country robbing innocent people of their money. (5:30)

>> WELCOME BACK TO THESHOW. YOU KNOW,

THERE'S A SAYING, CRIME, CRIMEDOESN'T PAY. BUT, SOMETIMES

FIGHTING CRIME DOES, EVEN WHENIT PROBABLY SHOULDN'T.

JORDAN KLEPPER EXPLAINS.

>> WE'VE ALL HEARD THETRAVEL WARNINGS ABOUT BANDITOS

COMMITTING HIGHWAY ROBBERY INPLACES LIKE JUAREZ MEXICO, BUT

NOW OUR POOREST BORDERS HAVEBROUGHT THIS SCOURGE INTO THE

HEART OF AMERICA, WELL, TEXAS.

>> WE WERE ON OUR WAY TO AFAMILY GATHERING IN LINDEN,

TEXAS, AND THAT'S WHENEVERYTHING STARTED.

>> AN INNOCENT FAMILY WASDRIVING DOWN A TEXAS HIGHWAY

WHEN SUDDENLY THEY WERE ROBBEDAT GUNPOINT BY A DEVILISHLY

HANDSOME BANDITO.

>> WHY ARE YOU IN THERE-ENACTMENT?

>> HEY, DON'T TELL ME HOW TO DOMY JOB.

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?

>> THEY SEARCHED THE CAR, FOUNDMONEY ON US, AND THEN TOOK OUR

MONEY.

>> WHERE THE [BLEEPED] WERE THECOPS.

>> THEY WERE THE COPS.

>> WHAT?

THEY WERE ACTUAL COPS.

>> SOUNDS LIKE SOMEONE DOESN'TKNOW WHAT A COP LOOKS LIKE.

>> THEY HAD POLICE UNIFORMS ON.

>> IS THIS THE MAN WHO PULLEDYOU OVER.

>> LOOKS SIMILAR.

>> [BLEEPED], THAT'S A COP.

WHAT KIND OF COP WOULD JUST TAKESOMEONE'S MONEY.

TO FIND A COP, YOU GOT ASK ACOP, NYPD COP ROY RICHTER.

["LAW AND ORDER" THEME MUSICPLAYING]

>> DOES THIS GUY LOOK FAMILIARTO YOU?

>> SOMETHING SIMILARTO WHAT A FIRST GRADER DREW.

>> IF YOU'RE NOT GOING TO TALK,MAYBE THIS WILL SWEETEN THE

DEAL.

>> NO THANKS.

I'M ON A DIET.

>> DON'T PLAY DUMB WITH ME, ROY.

WE'RE TAKING THAT TAKE TOMAKE YOU TELL ME WHAT THE

[BLEEPED] IS GOING ON.

>> ASK ME A QUESTION AND I'LLANSWER.

>> OH, THAT WAS EASY.

HE EXPLAINED SOMETHING CALLEDCIVIL FORFEITURE.

>> SO YOU CAN PULL SOMEONE OVERON THE HIGHWAY, TAKE THEIR STUFF

AND THIS IS LEGAL?

>> IN THE CIVIL FORFEITUREACTION, IT'S AUTHORIZED FOR A

POLICE OFFICER TO SEIZE PROCEEDSOF A CRIME.

>> HOW DO WE KNOW THAT THESEPEOPLE ARE GUILTY?

>> IF THEY HAVE CASH, THEASSUMPTION IS THAT THEY GOT THAT

CASH FROM SELLING THOSE DRUGS.

>> OH, I GET IT.

TIME TO FIND LITTLE MISSSCARFACE.

AND SCORE AN OUNCE OF TRUTH.

>> SO WHERE WERE YOU GOING TOBUY DRUGS.

>> WE WEREN'T GOING TO BUYDRUGS.

>> WHERE WERE YOU GOING TO NOTBUY DRUGS?

>> TO LINDEN, TEXAS, WHERE THEYHAVE WILD FLOWER TRAILS.

>> I'M SORRY.

I DON'T KNOW TEXAS DRUG LINGO.

>> I'M NOT A DRUG DEALER.

>> SHE CONTINUED WITH HER STORYABOUT A FREAKISHLY GOOD LOOKING

COP WHO ACCUSED THIS STUNNINGWOMAN AND HER DASHING HUSBAND

TRAVELING WITH TWOVERY SYMMETRICAL CHILDREN

OF BEING CROOKS JUST TOTAKE THEIR MONEY.

>> THE SAID LOOK, YOU KNOW,HERE'S THE DEAL, WE KNOW YOU'RE

UP TO SOMETHING, YOU'REMONEY LAUNDERING.

SO THEY GAVE US THE ULTIMATUMTHAT WE CAN EITHER GIVE THEM

OUR MONEY OR THEY WOULD TAKE OURCHILDREN AWAY.

>> SO, WHAT HAPPENED AFTER YOUGAVE YOUR KIDS AWAY?

>> THOSE ARE MY CHILDREN ANDTHERE'S NOT A MONEY AMOUNT THAT

COULD TAKE THEM AWAY.

>> BUT SOME PEOPLE THINK THERE'SSOMETHING WRONG WITH COPS MAKING

YOU CHOOSE BETWEEN YOUR KIDS ANDYOUR CRASH, LIKE ACLU CRYBABY

VANITA GUPTA.

["LAW AND ORDER" THEME MUSICPLAYING]

>> CIVIL LAWSUIT FORFEITURECREATES INCENTIVES FOR

ABUSIVE POLICE PRACTICES.IN A LOT OF CASES IT IS GOING TO

BE LESS COST EFFECTIVE FORINNOCENT FOLKS TO HIRE A

LAWYER FOR $5,000 TO TRY TO GETTHEIR MONEY BACK.

>> WHAT WOULD POLICE OFFICERSHAVE TO GAIN BY TAKING INNOCENT

PEOPLE'S STUFF?

>> MONEY.

>> BESIDES MONEY?

>> YOU KNOW, FUNDING FOR THEIRPOLICE DEPARTMENT. IN SOME

PLACES POLICE DEPARTMENTS AREKEEPING 80% TO 100% OF THE

ASSETS SEIZED.

>> IF YOU COULD CLAIM 100% OFTHE ASSETS SEIZED, THAT

[BLEEPED] WOULD HAPPEN ALL OVERTHE PLACE.

>> IT IS HAPPENING ALL OVER THEPLACE. THERE ARE SO MANY

INNOCENT PEOPLE SWEPT UP INTHESE PRACTICES.

>> AND THE MORE INVESTIGATING IDID, THE MORE INNOCENT VICTIMS I

FOUND.

>> THE COPS PULLED US OVER,SEARCHED OUR CAR FOR DRUGS, AND

THERE WAS NO DRUGS.

THEY JUST TOOK OUR MONEYBECAUSE THEY'RE COPS.

AND THEY COULD.

>> SO, THERE WERE NO DRUGS INTHE CAR?

>> NO DRUGS AT ALL.

>> BECAUSE YOU HAD INGESTEDTHEM?

>> NO.

>> BECAUSE YOU PUT THEM UP YOURBUTT?

>> NO.

>> BLINK OVER THE COURSE OF THENEXT MINUTE IF YOU HAD DRUGS IN

YOUR ANUS.

>> NO, SORRY.

>> SO A FEW INNOCENT PEOPLE LIKEBOWRIGHT AND FLORES GET SWEPT UP

IN THE FIGHT AGAINST CRIME ANDMAYBE OVER 140 OTHER PEOPLE

ON THAT SAME HIGHWAY IN TEXAS,AND THIS GUY IN THE BRONX,

AND THIS COUPLE IN PHILLYAND ALL THESE PEOPLE OVER THE

ENTIRE COUNTRY, BUT IT'S NOTLIKE IT ADDS UP TO MUCH.

>> THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT ISBANKING ON CLOSE TO $5 BILLION

ON CIVILLY SEIZED ASSETS.

>> $5 BILLION?

>> CLOSE TO THAT.

>> THAT IS [BLEEPED] TERRIFYING.

LOOKS LIKE OUR COP HAD TO COP TOWHAT WAS REALLY GOING ON.

EXPLAIN HOW THIS IS NOT HIGHWAYROBBERY.

>> IF THE VICTIMS ARE INNOCENT,THERE'S A PROCEDURE WHERE THEY

CAN GO THROUGH TO GET THAT MONEYBACK.

THEY HAVE TO SHOW THEIRINNOCENCE BY BEING FOUND NOT

GUILTY.

>> SO PROPERTY IS GUILTY UNTILPROVEN INNOCENT?

>> THE BURDEN OF PROOF IS ON THEPOLICE OFFICER.

AND, IF THAT POLICE OFFICER HASPROBABLE CAUSE.

>> AND, WE'LL FIGURE OUT IFTHEY'RE INNOCENT LATER.

SO NEXT TIME A COP STOPS YOUAND ACCUSES YOU OF DEALING

DRUGS, IF YOU DON'T WANT TO GIVEUP YOUR MONEY, JUST BE WILLING

TO GIVE UP YOUR SMOKING HOT KID.

[CHEERING AND APPLAUSE]>> Jon: JORDAN KLEPPER.

WE'LL BE RIGHT BACK.

Loading...