Looks like I'm not the only Arizonan fed up with armed Border Patrol agents seizing folks absent suspicion along public roads inside the country to interrogate, search and generally harass them absent individualized suspicion of wrongdoing.
Showing both courage and integrity, the video above depicts an active duty Border Patrol agent speaking out against the unlawful actions of fellow agents at so-called internal immigration checkpoints in Southern California.
Mike Flanders went public with his allegations of Border Patrol misconduct at internal checkpoints after his attempts at redress within CBP (Customs and Border Protection) were rebuffed. Not only were his concerns marginalized by his chain of command but his duties at the Interstate-8 checkpoint near Pine Valley were suspended and he was reassigned to roving patrol while an internal investigation and other adversarial actions were initiated against him.
In other words, Agent Flanders was retaliated against for daring to question the illegal actions of the agency. Something Customs & Border Protection and the Department of Homeland Security are obviously quite good at - retaliation that is as opposed to Border Protection or Homeland Security.
Back in 2010 and 2011, I posted several articles regarding a decorated military field grade officer who was illegally detained and harassed by armed Border Patrol agents at an internal CBP checkpoint near Uvalde, Texas. During that encounter, the military officer was not only illegally detained and harassed at the checkpoint but was also harassed at work when agents called his military command regarding the encounter and when the Chief Patrol Agent for the Del Rio Sector, Robert L. Harris, wrote a letter of complaint to his commanding officer months after the fact.
In followup to my earlier article. on July 1, 2013 at Pima County's Consolidated Justice Court, hearing officer Chris Holguin dismissed the single charge of "stopping unnecessarily in the highway" levied against me by Pima County Sheriff Deputy Thomas Audetat after he decided he needed to be someplace else other than the hearing he was responsible for creating in the first place.
On Monday July 1, 2013, I'll be back in Pima County Justice Court defending myself against a bogus traffic citation issued on March 29, 2013 at the SR-86 Milepost 146.6 CBP roadblock. The citation was issued by Pima County Sheriff Deputy Thomas Audetat, badge #6312, at the beheadst of CBP Agent J Grayson for allegedly stopping unnecessarily in the highway, a violation of ARS 28-871A. This despite the fact, I was stopped in accordance with two stop signs placed in the highway and by CBP agents who ordered me to stop.
One of the advantages of video recording your compelled encounters with Border Patrol agents at internal suspicionless checkpoints no where near the border they're supposed to be patrolling is the history the videos reveal & the searchable database they create.
Back in early March, I blogged about a video that had gone viral on youtube depicting several video clips of individuals asserting their rights at suspicionless checkpoints inside the country (see video above). Since part of that video depicted an encounter Checkpoint USA had at an internal suspicionless Customs & Border Protection checkpoint back in 2008, I was contacted and interviewed by David Martin Davies of Fronteras Desk for an article he published on March 8, 2013.
My thanks go out to all those who assisted with organizing and advertising the contest along with everyone who took the time to post an entry:
On March 4th we announced The Checkpoint Contest, which solicited content that best demystifies checkpoints and educates others about their rights should they encounter one themselves.
When the deadline passed on April 8th we had received nine entries, which were judged by Terry Bressi (on behalf of Checkpoint USA), Ian Freeman (on behalf of Liberty Radio Network) and myself (on behalf of Cop Block). We all agreed – Gavin Seim’s submission best addressed the contest criteria.
For his efforts, Seim will be sent the Veho Muvi Gumball 3000 HD videocamera....
Read the rest of the announcement here.
For those of you who've been following this blog for a while, you may remember a story I posted in March of last year involving a military field grade officer at a Border Patrol checkpoint near Uvalde, TX. That initial report was followed up with another post several months later containing additional video footage and commentary regarding the incident.
[Alternative Title: Quality of Border Patrol New Hires Reaches New Lows]
While traveling back from a remote worksite on the afternoon of Thursday January 20, 2011 along SR86 in Southern Arizona, I had an experience at the Homeland Security checkpoint located near mile marker 147 that pretty much summed up many of my encounters at this internal suspicionless checkpoint over the past few years.
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Welcome to Checkpoint USA's blog. Here you'll find general information and discussions regarding growing threats to our right to privacy & travel.
While I refer to court cases along with state and federal law frequently in this blog, nothing written here should be construed as legal advice. I am not an attorney. Rather, I'm someone concerned about the growing disregard for individual rights present at all levels of government.
My conclusions are my own based upon personal experience and research. The law is made purposely complex however and varies significantly from place to place and circumstance to circumstance.
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