Vice Squad
Friday, October 17, 2003
Another Chicago Reverse Sting Update

Today's Chicago Tribune provides some more details on the ongoing reverse sting
anti-drug operations in Chicago. More than 2,300 of our friends and neighbors (463 on
Thursday alone) have managed to get arrested and charged with attempted drug
possession, and 956 of them have had their automobiles impounded. The cost of
reclaiming a car for these unconvicted but alleged misdemeanants is more than $650.
These are the eggs that must be broken, it seems, in preparing the omelette of a
drug-free world!

Oops, maybe not a drug-free world -- just a drug-free Chicago. Our neighbors in the
Hawkeye State will appreciate this sentiment from a Chicago Police chief: "We're going
to make it so unprofitable to run a dope ring in this city, you're going to have to move
to Iowa."

The Trib article comes with two pictures of a total of ten of our friends and neighbors
handcuffed; how did Trib photographers manage to be on the scene? Embeddedness!
"Nearly 1,000 police officers from across the city, accompanied by dozens of TV
cameras and reporters invited to witness the operation, spread over 20 locations
throughout...the West Side." It's always in the public interest, of course, when
the police and the media team up against consensual crimes. And what if you don't play
by the rules set by the police? With arrests dwindling off in the afternoon, the police
"got a report that a man on the street was tipping off neighbors to the police
operation. After being warned to stop, the man was arrested."

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