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Thursday, October 27, 2005

That cash in your trunk, Part II

By Greg Reeves

Speaking of the forfeiture issue on Gov. Matt Blunt's plate today, newspapers apparently wrecked Missouri forfeiture a decade ago when they pointed out police were using it as a revenue stream. A speaker at the governor's Crime Roundtable today said as much.

The Star did its part. In two series the feds hated and Harvard's Goldsmith Award folks loved, reporter Karen Dillon laid out the forfeiture issue:

To Protect and Collect (1999)
"Police and federal agencies have diverted millions of dollars from Missouri schoolchildren. Under state law, money seized in drug cases is supposed to go to public school districts, but some police departments have found a simple way to keep the money for their own use."

Taking Cash into Custody (2000)
"Police and highway patrols across the country are evading state laws to improperly keep millions of dollars in cash and property seized in drug busts and traffic stops."

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