Skip to comments.DEA Gone Wild
Posted on 07/30/2012 8:50:26 PM PDT by george76
the DEA here commandeered private property from a law-abiding businessman and ineptly deployed it in an operation that got a man killed and now endangers a family that had nothing to do with the case. There is a term for what the DEA did with that truck: grand theft auto.
The DEA is running neck-and-neck with the ATF for the title of most dangerous federal law-enforcement agency; in my view, both should be dissolved and their responsibilities handed over to some more responsible party, such as a group of drunken rodeo clowns or ADD-addled teen-agers.
Whoever approved this operation belongs in a jail cell next to whoever approved Fast and Furious.
(Excerpt) Read more at nationalreview.com ...
As I’ve stated numerous times before on this site, if the public knew the kind of people that were “protecting and serving” right now, they would be horrified.
You gave me my first lol of the day with your drunken rodeo clown reference. Thx!
I suspect this is not what James Madison had in mind when he wrote “to regulate commerce among the several states”.
Otherwise they need to sit down.
The DEA, like the EPA is another one of the things we can thank Dick Nixon for.
DEA is DOJ, this is another Holder exercise!
Here are some more details from the Ft. Worth paper:
North Texas truck owner has score to settle with the DEA
Posted Monday, Jul. 30, 2012
By DANE SCHILLER
The phone rang before sunrise. It woke Craig Patty, owner of a tiny North Texas trucking company, to vexing news about Truck 793 — a big red semi supposedly getting repairs in Houston.
“Your driver was shot in your truck,” said the caller, a business colleague. “Your truck was loaded with marijuana. He was shot eight times while sitting in the cab. Do you know anything about your driver hauling marijuana?”
“What did you say?” Patty recalled saying. “Could you please repeat that?”
The truck, it turned out, had been everywhere but in the shop.
Commandeered by one of his drivers secretly working with federal agents, the truck had been hauling marijuana from the border as part of an undercover drug operation. And unbeknownst to Patty, the Drug Enforcement Administration was paying his driver, Lawrence Chapa, to use the truck to bust traffickers.
At least 17 hours before that early morning phone call, Chapa was shot dead in a botched drug sting by hijackers trying to steal the red Kenworth T600 truck and a load of pot in front of more than a dozen law enforcement officers — all of them taken by surprise.
In the confusion of the attack in northwest Harris County, compounded by officers in the operation not all knowing each other, a Houston policeman shot and wounded a Harris County sheriff’s deputy.
But eight months later, Patty still can’t get recompense from the U.S. government’s decision to use his truck and employee without his permission.
His company, which hauls sand as part of fracking operations for oil and gas companies, was pushed to the brink of failure after the attack because the truck was knocked out of commission, he said. He had only one other truck in operation.
In documents shared with the Houston Chronicle, he is demanding that the DEA pay $133,532 in repairs and lost wages over the bullet-sprayed truck, and another $1.3 million for the damage to him and his family, who fear retaliation by a drug cartel over the bungled narcotics sting.
“When you start a new business, there are obvious pitfalls you go through, a learning curve,” said Patty, who before buying his two trucks worked in the pharmaceutical industry. “But who would ever be ready to deal with this?
“How am I, a small businessman, father of three, American Joe from Texas supposed to make a claim against a federal agency that has conveniently shrouded itself behind a red, white and blue cloak of confidentiality and secrecy?”
‘I was not part of this’
Copies of letters and e-mails from Patty’s insurance company state that it won’t pay for repairs because the truck was part of a law-enforcement operation. Patty drew from his 401k retirement fund to repair the truck, which was out of operation for 100 days.
“I was not part of this,” he said. “I had absolutely no knowledge of any of it until after it happened.”
For its part, the DEA has not admitted that it was using Chapa as a spy because its official policy is not to comment on whether someone was an informant — even if he is dead.
Lisa Johnson, a spokeswoman for the DEA Houston Division, confirmed that Patty’s demand had been received and noted that it would be investigated by the agency. But the Chronicle established that Chapa was an informant based on interviews with multiple law-enforcement officials who spoke on the condition that they not be identified, and later by courtroom comments of prosecutors.
Patty’s request, a richly detailed spiral-bound document submitted this month, chronicles much of what he has been through, including the operating costs for his trucks and everything repaired or replaced due to the attack. Among other disturbing chores was the need to hire a Spring-based company to clean up the mess caused by the killing in the cab of the truck.
Houston lawyer Mark Bennett, who is advising Patty, said if Patty’s initial claim is not resolved, the next step would be to sue.
“It is hardly surprising they haven’t been entirely forthcoming with Mr. Patty about what happened and how it happened,” he said. “I do not think the DEA would want to tell the whole truth about this, the truth they might have to tell if there is a lawsuit.”
Living on edge
Patty hired Chapa five weeks before the shooting and now wonders how many of the trips in the $90,000 rig included DEA work. GPS information from the truck reveals an unauthorized trek to the Rio Grande Valley in the days before Chapa was killed. He took a 1,000-mile, round-trip detour from the route he was supposed to travel.
Perhaps most unnerving, Patty says, is that drug mobsters now likely know his name, and certainly, his truck.
Panic at the Patty home these days can be triggered by something as simple a deer scampering through the wooded yard or a strange car pulling into the driveway. One recent morning as his wife made breakfast in the kitchen, one of his young sons suddenly bolted across the house yelling, “Get the guns.”
A Bronco sport-utility vehicle had pulled into the driveway and past a broken gate. The dogs were barking in the darkness. Patty grabbed a pistol and headed for the front yard.
The Bronco pulled away, leaving a shiny object by the front walkway. It turned out to be the morning newspaper wrapped in a plastic bag reflecting a neighbor’s floodlight.
The whole ordeal has forced his children to grow up more quickly than he’d like, Patty said.
“I wanted to keep them young as long as I could,” he said. “I’ve gone to great lengths to keep my son believing in Santa Claus, and now I’m talking to him about death, mayhem and drug cartels. That is a huge canyon between the two.”
The truck has a new driver, but there’s still one bullet hole inside the truck’s cab. A chunk of a seat was sliced out as evidence, and covered with a patch.
“I really do not worry about driving it,” said driver Norman Anderson — as long as it doesn’t involve a trip to South Texas.
“I feel like if I go there, I should put an ‘X’ on each side of my neck, draw a dotted line between them, and write, “’Cut here.’”
The DEA is a racketeering operation.
Everyone involved in it is a criminal loose cannon.
Just look at the crap that has gone down in SF Bay Area with Weilsh’s gang. Some 42 local cops are up for felony convictions.
Until we put their paychecks, benefits and pensions on the line, they will continue to act like a foreign army of occupation. (This applies to local SWAT teams going to the wrong house, too.)
Dissolved and turned over to whom? As long as the American people want to fight the War on Drugs, there will always be an agency willing to fight it, zealously.
The FBI, DEA, ICE, and ATF are all involved in each other’s investigations, much of it doing the same thing.
The War on Drugs has caused more case law and Constitutional challenges to the 4th, 5th, and 2nd Amendments then any other source.
Sometimes I wonder if they are taking payoffs from, or protecting the real criminals by 'going to the wrong house'.
I didn’t know presidents could write laws and long lasting legislation. Funny I thought democrat congresses could and have created, wrote laws that created 99% of government.
These gov agencies just choke and destroy businesses and take away our freedom.
I don’t know if it’s payoffs or stupidity, I do know this:
When a SWAT team goes to the wrong house, the citizens should say: we’ve got the wrong mayor, the wrong police chief, and the wrong chain of command down to the field-commander level in our police department.
Fire them. Replace them. Start over again. Make it clear to the new guys that there’s no such thing as “going to the wrong house”.
Dick Nixon gave us the DEA and the EPA. And the 55 mile an hour speed limit.
Presidents can sign Executive Orders. Tricky Dick made Elvis the DEA’s first ‘’honorary’’ director.
Maybe it wasn't the right houses, but the right ones to invade. If the Police or various government agencies do enough work to justify taking you into custody, they don't have the wrong address.
If you don't want to confront the armed criminals, you bully the innocent, so that the criminals get fair warning to vacate the premises. Everyone goes home happy, alive, and often richer.
Well.... except the innocent.
It's beyond GTA, they used the truck to haul stuff. That's Felony theft of services.
Someone got killed in the commission of that crime. That's murder.
I wonder and always will, was a frac sand hauler taken for another reason (so the DEA would have an excuse to search every load of frac sand going down the road, thus messing with the oil patch)?
O'bammy don't be liking that fracking stuff, don'cha know.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.