19. December 2005 · Comments Off on More Police Harassment Of Ordinary Citizens · Categories: Domestic, General

As our long-term readers know, I’ve been following the case of Terry Bressi, and his fight against a seemingly illegal joint federal/state/indian roadblock conducted in Arizona.

Well, included with my last email update was this from Denver:

A similar incident to mine recently took place in Denver, Colorado. A 50 year old mother of four was forcibly removed from a public bus by federal agents while she was on her way to work one morning. As part of its normal route, the bus was traveling through the Denver Federal Center and was stopped at a federal checkpoint. Armed agents boarded the bus and demanded that everyone show their ID. Given that nobody is even required to have ID on their person if they aren’t driving, Deborah Davis refused and was arrested and charged with two federal misdemeanors for daring to stand up for her rights. Her case was quickly highlighted at:


and the resulting public outcry resulted in the federal prosecutor dropping all charges the day before she was to go to court. To find out about what’s increasingly becoming a common occurrence in this country, please check out the website highlighting Deborah Davis’s case above.

This story has gotten some MSM attention. But for those who would like to use this as something with which to demonize the Patriot Act, sorry:

Carl Rusnok, spokesman for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which oversees the Federal Protective Service, said the practice of checking IDs at the bus stop was instituted after the 1995 bombing of the Oklahoma City federal building.

The cursory bus check is part of a “multilayered security system,” he said. “There are 9,000 federal facilities in the country, and virtually every one of them requires an ID check.”

I’ll have to do some follow-up on this. At the moment, I’m confident nobody checks the ID of passengers on the several buses that pass the Ronald Reagan Federal Bldg. in Santa Ana, which is immediately adjacent to the Transit Terminal.

Update: Jacob Sullum is following this. So is Adam Shostack. And Alicia Caldwell at the Denver Post has a good article, including a graphic, showing that this particular bus actually goes through the Federal Center campus. Im still wwondering if they check passengers in private vehicles.

And here’s a discussion post, with one comment, at Josh Marshall’s TPMCafe. I honestly don’t know why this hasn’t gotten more exposure in the blogosphere. I would think this would have my old friend Jeralyn Merritt blowing steam out her ears, as this is just the sort of abuse she rails against, and it’s also in her neck of the woods.

Update II: Jeralyn informs me that she blogged on this at a local Denver site, 5280.com. She also notes that charges weren’t filed on Ms. Davis. I, for one, hope it doesn’t end here. Criminal charges were also dropped in Terry Bressi’s case; but he’s following-up on it civilly. And the fact that she’s not being charged with a crime does not effect the matter of Ms. Davis’ rights being violated. If the facts are as she states, she was man-handled, and detained for over three hours, which caused her to lose her job.

But there are larger issues at hand than just the fate of a single individual. It seems the Denver RTD has adjusted it’s “route 100” around the campus, with a spur going in, for those with business there – to apease Ms. Davis and her supporters. However, as Carl Rusnok stated, this is going on at other federal facilities. And, as reader Chaz points out (see comments), federal contractors as well.

Comments closed.