MK Occupy Minnesota: Police Gave Drugs To Occupy Protesters, Mentally Unstable People And The Homeless
By Dan Feidt —
MINNEAPOLIS — NOV 12 2012 — Law enforcement officers under a state training program called Drug Recognition Evaluators encouraged people in downtown Minneapolis, including Occupy Minnesota protesters at Peavey Plaza and other vulnerable and houseless people to participate in alcohol and drug intoxication evaluations. After a 35-minute video “MK Occupy Minnesota” [produced by Occupy Minneapolis, Communities United Against Police Brutality, Rogue Media & Twin Cities Indymedia] was released documenting claims of several DRE participants they’d been given drugs and encouraged to take drugs, an officer from Hutchinson, MN, stepped forward to corroborate part of that story.
Mn Bureau of Criminal Apprehension under the Department of Public Safety, generated a 513-page investigative report described in Minnesota Public Radio & Star Tribune stories, but not available publicly in full until now, adding another chunk to this incomplete story from one of the many gray areas in the war on drugs & the suppression of Occupy protesters.
New BCA Report URL: http://hongpong.com/files/dre/DRE-investigation-BCA.pdf (78MB)
Original video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTgN17FZGKE MK Occupy Minnesota: Drugs & the DRE Program at Peavey Plaza – May 2 2012
This BCA report, a compilation of interviews, correspondence & law enforcement & their lawyers refusing to answer the BCA’s questions about DRE, raises many questions. Besides the claims of the Occupy protesters, many unethical practices including cash for participation, discussing gaining “leverage” over “volunteers” by threatening to arrest them (pg 76), not having an ambulance near where people were encouraged to take drugs at the gravel pit in Richfield near the MnDOT garage, no waivers, the explicit suspending of state drug laws for a privately organized certification program (pg 91, 99), etc.
Many of the officers discuss a general sense of unease across their entire class, of trespassing certain obvious moral or ethical boundaries (‘your morals are gone’, pg 428). As Minneapolis considers dissolving the Civilian Review Authority oversight board, many connections to the Minneapolis Police Department including the 5th Precinct have not been reviewed.
Other items include: a BCA AT&T phone subpoena to trace phone/SMS activity by one of the officers involved, and more on the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) role in the program (pg 223, 231) — as an officer discusses, they’re called “evaluators” rather than “experts” because the courts don’t really recognize it (pg 202). IACP receives large donations from major defense contractors to promote local police policies expanding biometrics & surveillance, war-on-terror tech deployed at home, mass incarceration and intensifying the war on drugs. The IACP has managed to impose this pseudo-legal yet scientifically unproven framework, the DRE, with its morally abhorrent training program, on many states besides Minnesota.
In the end of this phase, the Hennepin County Attorney’s office ruled out filing charges after so many officers stonewalled (pg 54-57) [as the Strib noted, some of the same same legal operations used by the disgraced Metro Gang Strike Force officers]. Pages significant to documenting the way illegal government operations in Minnesota get papered over, the ‘coverup machine’ network of lawyered up law enforcement, listed below (‘get everyone quiet’, pg 367)– and really, Hennepin concluded, unless an officer handed out a generous 42 grams in one sitting, it wouldn’t be a felony crime.
While everything in this strange report should be taken critically, disturbing themes of emerge of relatively young rural police officers being sent around Minneapolis to find the chemically dependent & mentally ill, turn them loose again after they’re intoxicated, without any help like medical or social support, and connections to further gray areas like developing informants in the drug world(pg 381), and a methamphetamine-addicted informant handled into performing an evaluation by a Ramsey County deputy.
Another key subject is the Donald Steven Turner interview (pg 485-492) wherein he describes not only his certainty that Occupiers were lying, he seemingly brags about giving a Minneapolis police officer he knows one person’s name and then scaring them into jumping a train out of town, talking up his ability to develop ‘profiles’ on OccupyMN members, etc. While the authorities describe Turner as a credible OccupyMN member, he had a reputation for scuffling with people and being tossed from Occupy meetings, taking at least one bike, and other serious issues stretching back long before Occupy started in New York. This are some of the most jaded & disturbing statements I’ve ever seen documented, seemingly bragging about informing to spread fear. More interviews with others he affected are really needed to tell this particular story. Whether or not his statements have any validity, the damage to privacy of third parties he named has already been done in his statement to law enforcement — unfortunately, redacting the first names Don put out there would do no good.
Voters showed last week they’re becoming increasingly weary of the war on drugs, which has generated huge profits for lawyers, corporations, banks and Wall Street through laundered money. All this shadiness isn’t a bug, it’s a feature. Will Minnesota recognize the failure of the war on drugs and cancel abusive, unscientific programs like the DRE? Can Minnesota shift from punishment, coercion & incarceration to harm-reduction chemical dependency policies that treat everyone humanely?
[birthday/phone/contact info of people targeted by DRE was removed with black rectangles. This document did not arrive via government/data practices channels, and some other details, likely police personal details like cell phone & home addresses were apparently removed with marker probably by the BCA.]
For more information & work on similar issues please see the websites of groups involved in producing the initial MK Occupy Minnesota video:
Communities United Against Police Brutality – CUAPB.org – @CUAPB
—- This story and the original video MK Occupy Minnesota are licensed Creative Commons with Attribution —
Here is shorthand for some interesting pages to check out further. Particular interesting pages marked with asterisks:
36 Hutchinson drug kit?
49 Holiday parking lot lol
66 LDF coverup
76 using statutes for leverage to gain ‘volunteers’
83 * “I just gave them marijuana it’s not like I hurt anybody”
91 WTF instruction on illegal drugs?
99 WTF little to no instruction on street subjects
102 incentives “could offer them money”
105 “wink wink nod nod”
106 – why blank?
109 “I just gave them marijuana”
112 warnings about occupy minnesota / Munoz instruction after video
125 Telephone subpoena
129 Don Turner says occupiers lied about DRE
136 possible missing marijuana from Nobles Co evidence room?
140 Hennepin County Attorney CASE CLOSED summary
141 Hutchinson starts inquiry
142 Roster of police participants
148 players in International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP)
152-153 *** the case – interview
154 **** disposing of the case
157 no independent medical personnel or ambulance nearby (even though drugs are being taken in area)
162 phone subpoena
163 drugs with volunteers
198 getting leverage on volunteers- threaten to arrest
202 definitions of ‘expert’ vs ‘evaluator’ – they aren’t real ‘experts’ but IACP labels it
206 Munoz instructs not to hand out drugs after video is posted
208 Michelle Ness: “we kinda looked over to Peavey and we’re like whoa concentration of potential clients”
217 Hutchinson PD evidence sheet
223-224 IACP control log & material
226 instructors watch all evaluations?
227-228 training schedule
232 “kidnapping” & volunteers
233 probation & volunteers, illegal/warrant issues
235 sketchiness ‘it was odd’
239 offering cheeseburgers
241 occupy & video questions
244 national players in IACP / DRE
245 coverup lawyer
249 5th Precinct MPD connection
261 MPD 5th Pct
268 MPD 5th Pct
273 MPD & incentives advice
275 coverup lawyer
278 * Certificates & IACP
279 uneasy feeling for all students
286 Otterson – no instruction
287 “shitty areas”
288 occupy video day we took final exam / weed
289 call to MPD about beat-up guy
291 * direct supervisor for years
295 no independent medical presence or ambulance at MnDOT
305 specs for program change from 12 to 15 evals
309 MPD 5th Pct
310 No waivers for drug participants
311 Munoz says don’t provide drugs after occupy video
315 “target area”
323 story about prostitute
335 blackmail “volunteers” via Minneapolis statutes: ” get us copies of Minneapolis codes, um in case we saw people you know breaking any city ordinances and kinda use that as a way to get them to see that, you know you can come with us or you know Minneapolis”
340 certification goes via the IACP DRE national website (NOT ‘real’ state authority)
347 *** Willers narrative – confusion over brothers
357 fear of being recorded at Peavey Plaza
360 ok to buy cigarettes, cash, overlook state drug law etc
361 giving $$$
367-8 *** coverup Legal Defense Fund “get everyone quiet”
381 developing informants “a lot of times we never charged ’em. We said you know give us some info on who your source is”
385-386 Pete’s box getting low
387-88 ** informants high on meth
389 smoking in the gravel pit
390 letting off warrant suspect, more suspension of law
391 officer had weed “a bag the officer had the marijuana in” ??
406 coercion of “volunteers”
412-413 woman who was “nuts” = no mental health support
414 using traffic stops & $ for “volunteers”
415 giving out beer
421 snitching: “We did a UA and ah they actually um they apparently he was gonna snitch out some people for drugs and guns”
426 getting desperate, offering a buffet
427 threat of jail
428 ** “your morals are gone”
429 “you can either go to jail for possession of the drugs or if you want to cooperate with us we’ll give you a pass.”
439 giving out shooter glasses
443-445 getting high
447 odd redaction may be house address?
460 crimes at discretion
468-469 crack, pimp, Popeye’s
470 a pimp / the jacket incident
471″it is weird. It is a weird class to go out and try to find someone high”
479 AT&T cell phone subpoena
485-492 *** Don Steven Turner interview
487-492 *** Don talks to MPD Mercil (Sp?) a lot
495 it’s like a joint task force re expanded geographic arrest powers
496-497 smoking in Richfield
499 goodie bag MJ
501-513 final Hennepin County report