St. Catharines, Ontario: Federal Crowns put sex assault shield principles in danger to win drug case

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hamiltonhashmob
St. Catharines, Ontario: Federal Crowns put sex assault shield principles in danger to win drug case

From http://mernagh.ca/: The feds -- to prevent us from getting our hands on the documents -- are using rape victim case law to defend their point. Laws that are used to keep defense attorneys from harassing rape victims counselors and doctors. There's no application here. Our government is prepared to undo rape victim case law in their zeal to prosecute and protect themselves from a medicinal marijuana challenge. . . . A second issue the feds raise has never been heard in court before. Never. There's no case law. However, the ramifications would have a dramatic effect on legal proceedings that it's our duty to have the Ontario Court of Appeal to hear the problem. The feds arguement is unheard of before. As such a second day with plenty of advance planning will be needed to argue the government's motions.

hamiltonhashmob

"America's Toughest Sheriff" linked to human rights abuses training Canadian cops to look for drugs

Maricopa County's Joe Arpiao, "America's Toughest Sheriff" is training
Miramichi, New Brunswick cops to detect drugs. His human rights record
is less than exemplary:

http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/arpaio

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2009/3/14/13634/1875/354/708489

http://www.smirkingchimp.com/news/20724

http://miramichileader.canadaeast.com/news/article/657697

"The two police officers underwent an intense two week training course
followed by four days of practical training at a jail in Phoenix.

"The Maricopa County Jail has an intake of 300 people a day," explained
Goodfellow. "Each person who comes in is checked for drugs and our methods
are tested against their urine sample."

Pubdate: 06 May 2009
Source: Miramichi Leader
Page A1
Website: http://miramichileader.canadaeast.com/
Feedback: http://miramichileader.canadaeast.com/onsite.php?page=contact
Address: PO Box 500, 175 General Manson Way, Miramichi, New Brunswick
E1V 3M6 Canada
Copyright: 2009 Brunswick News Inc.
Author: Laura MacInnis

New drug recognition experts working to keep streets safer

MIRAMICHI - The breathalyzer may be a good tool for catching drunk drivers
but for years officers had little way of picking up on other forms of
impairment unless a driver was blatantly, falling over, high.

That is, until now.

The drug recognition evaluation is a 12 step process of psychophysical
testing.

"The test will not only show whether or not the person is impaired but also
the category of drug they have been using," said Const. Cheryl Seeley of the
Miramichi Police Force.

Two MPF officers, Seeley and Const. Ed Goodfellow were trained as Drug
Recognition Experts through federal funding at the beginning of this year.
An officer with the District 6 RCMP has been trained as well.

These testing practices are standardized worldwide, so a person caught in
British Columbia or Wisconsin will undergo the same tests as those in
Miramichi.

The two police officers underwent an intense two week training course
followed by four days of practical training at a jail in Phoenix.

"The Maricopa County Jail has an intake of 300 people a day," explained
Goodfellow. "Each person who comes in is checked for drugs and our methods
are tested against their urine sample."

Along with the training comes a kit each officer receives with all the tools
they need to perform their tests. The kit bag includes a stethoscope,
thermometer, flashlight and magnifying glass.

"There is no magic black box," said Seeley, comparing these tests to blowing
into a breathalyzer.

The officers received accreditation from the International Association of
Chiefs of Police and both said this has made them more confident in
searching out impaired drivers.

"Before, a driver would have to be blatantly high for us to be able to
arrest him," said Seeley.

Goodfellow said before this training he arrested only one driver who was
convicted of being impaired by a drug other than alcohol.

"And he was passed out at the wheel when I found him."

Since they began using the standardized field sobriety testing at the start
of the year they say they have picked up a lot more people and are more
confident in laying charges.

Goodfellow has picked up 12 drivers for impairment since January while
Seeley has picked up eight.

Last month Goodfellow said he pulled a man over on suspicion of impaired
driving, but the man showed negative for alcohol on the screening test. Due
to his new training the officer was able to discern exactly what the man was
high on and arrest him.

"If it had been a year ago we would have had to let the man walk," said
Goodfellow.

The officers said they expect a lot of impaired drivers to be surprised by
what their tests will actually pick up on.

"A lot of people don't realize they are going to get caught," said Seeley.

"Some people think it is okay to smoke marijuana and drive because they
don't consider themselves to be impaired. But they are impaired."

And that's what the officers say they want drivers to remember more than
anything else.

"We want people to know it is not safe to smoke any type of cannabis and
drive. And that red warning on your prescription bottle that says don't
operate heavy machinery is there for a reason," said Goodfellow.

Ultimately he believes the training they've received will go a long way to
keeping the streets in the community safer.

"For every impaired driver off the roads that is potentially someone's child
who won't get run over."

Deputy Chief Paul Fiander agrees. He said the impact of having two officers
trained has been immediate.

"We have a number of cases before the courts. Before, that may not have
happened."

Fiander said ideally the police force want to have two more patrol officers
trained and are seriously considering sending others to the next available
training session.

"We would like to have one [drug recognition expert officer] on each
platoon. The two trained officers are on an on-call schedule when not on
shift. They can be called in to provide assistance at a road stop if it is
needed."

Overall Fiander said the training has built confidence with the officers and
within the department.

"Rather than question if a person is impaired or not, they can feel
comfortable with the testing and the decision to call the drug recognition
expert officer to the scene."