The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not represent our advertisers

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Cops traumatize family with bogus, misdirected ‘pot bust’

'We'll never be the same,' after police sniff hydroponic tomato garden

A family in America’s heartland was traumatized when local cops invaded their home, battering ram in hand, searching for marijuana based on their purchase of hydroponic gardening equipment to raise tomatoes.

Bob Harte, a former CIA employee, found himself flat on his stomach in his Kansas City home after a swarm of armed deputies from Johnson County, with guns drawn, invaded his home one morning, freaking out his wife, Addie, and their two kids – a girl in kindergarten and a boy in the seventh grade. Having seen enough TV crime shows, the teenager instinctively put his hands up.

The officers would only say they were searching for narcotics.

“You take the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, all the rights you expect to have – when they come in like that, the only right you have is not to get shot if you cooperate,” Harte told the Washington Post about the raid April 20, 2102. “They open that door, your life is on the line.”

After five years, the Hartes’ efforts to get satisfaction through federal lawsuits have failed. But last week they got the news that a three-judge panel of the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeal ruled the case could move forward.

The ruling blasted authorities for laziness and possible fabrication, the kind of overzealous police work that entangles innocent people – especially hydroponic gardeners.



Anonymous said...

There was a hydroponics store in Salisbury for a couple of years. It folded. Was it because people were concerned that if they shopped there, their tag numbers would be collected by law enforcement and their names put on a list?

Anonymous said...

A comparable event occurred in Pocomoke City back in the 1980s. The Pocomoke police raided James Hayman's house in the middle of the night and scared the crap out of everyone and almost got shot by Mr. Hayman. The problem was the drug activity was occurring at another house owned by a different Hayman.

Anonymous said...

Precisely why 2:57.
The government does not like people cutting in to their profits.

Anonymous said...

There's no excuse for foolishness like this.

Anonymous said...


So the cops broke the Hayman door?

Anonymous said...

Good for them to continue to pursue this. Lots of respect for them.

Anonymous said...

I hate the government and police state it has erected.
This is tyranny.
We are not free.

Anonymous said...

"So the cops broke the Hayman door?"

Not only broke the front door but went upstairs and broke at least 2 bedroom doors while residents were sleeping. It was a "no knock" raid.

lmclain said...

Another (former) cheerleader who sees that his "rights" don't mean anything to anyone.
The Bill of rights has been superseded by the Patriot Act and the NDAA.
Now, we just accept 24-7, space to ground constant surveillance on every kind.
He bought a LEGAL machine and that was the basis for a search warrant??
What? Do the police have a stack of pre-filled court orders for special occasions where they were too stupid/incompetent to do even a LITTLE investigation? Just a tiny bit??
Hey, Bill....use that stack over there. Yeah the stack labeled "Hunches".
It's as good as any of them.
Back in the 80's, the government went to the companies who sold these products and made them surrender their customer lists and shipping manifests.
Then, they went to those customers with guns and warrants.
No investigations there, either. Our rights haven't JUST started to disappear. All that cheering makes time go by quick, I guess.
Keep it up.

Anonymous said...

Cops ain't paid to be nice to people.

Anonymous said...

2:59- It also happened to school teacher friend of mine in Pocomoke in the mid 2000's. He bought a hydroponic machine online, cops showed up same week and searched the house. If you buy one, wait a month or more before using, that is if you're buying it to grow weed.