From the October 2007 Idaho Observer:

Roid ragers: Cops on steroids

by The Idaho Observer

The use of steroids, a class of drugs scheduled alongside morphine and barbiturates by the U.S. government, is a huge controversy in the world of competitive sports. Steroid use without a prescription is punishable under criminal statutes and athletes who admit to steroid use are publicly humiliated and stripped of their awards. Some are criminally prosecuted.

Few, however, are aware that the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency has been investigating the increasingly widespread use of steroids by police since 2005. The scope of the investigation, code named "Raw Deal," is nationwide. In the story "Big Guns: When Cops Use Steroids: Steroid Abuse Can Contribute to Police Brutality—Even Murder" by ABC’s Marc Lallanilla (May, 2005) it was noted that, "From New York City to Norman, Okla., police departments are investigating a growing number of incidents involving uniformed police officers who are using steroids to build beefy, muscular physiques."

Aside from the unprescribed possession and use of steroids being legally akin to possession of heroin and cocaine, steroids have also been known to cause violent, aggressive behavior in those who use them. If drinking and driving is a bad combination, then so is pumping steroids and carrying badges and guns.

When one begins to make inquiries in this area, patterns begin to emerge. The problem of police abuse of steroids has been known since the 60s. Police departments didn’t begin adopting regulations regarding officers’ use of steroids until the 80s. Even then, though obtaining, possessing, transporting and using steroids are all crimes, such regulations are seldom enforced by police departments until incidents of police brutality and murder force the issue.

A shocking number of incidents of police brutality and murder nationwide involve steroid use. The ABC story quoted Gene Sanders, a police psychologist in Spokane, Washington, who had worked extensively with police officers who are steroid abusers. Sanders said, "If I were going to be conservative, I’d say that probably five percent of everyone who walks in my door either is using or has used steroids. This is getting to be a major problem."

The Raw Deal investigation is still ongoing. Miami, Phoenix, Boston, Houston and Kansas City are just a few of the areas whose police (and, in some cases fire) departments are being investigated for steroid use.

According to the DEA, steroid powder is being manufactured in Columbia and is then being smuggled into the U.S. where it is formed into swallowable tablets or made into an injectable liquid.

The DEA investigation is not likely to stop or even stem the nationwide problem of cops on steroids. The DEA is focusing on doctors who illegally supply police with steroids; steroid-abusing police are not the focus of the investigation. Plus, focusing an investigation of steroid trafficking on doctors is like focusing a heroin-trafficking investigation on doctors.

The bottom line is that the transport, purchase, possession and use of steroids among cops in America is tacitly approved at every point in the chain, though some phony pressure is being placed on doctors for operating in violation of their license to dispense controlled substances (see page 22). The DEA’s Raw Deal investigation is a cover so police departments and federal agencies can claim plausible denial when cops erupt in a steroid-induced rage and brutally attack or murder someone.

Police (brutality) crime blotter

School Guards Break Child’s Arm And Arrest Her For Dropping Cake

Pandemic of police and security violence continues unabated

School security guards in Palmdale, CA, were caught on camera assaulting a 16-year-old girl and breaking her arm after she spilled some cake during lunch and left some crumbs on the floor after cleaning it up. The incident occurred last week at Knight High School in Palmdale and was caught on a cell phone camera by another pupil who was then also assaulted by the security guards.

~Citizens for Legitimate Government, Sept. 29, 2007

Blackwater guards killed 16 as U.S. touted progress

During the ensuing week, as U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker and Army Gen. David Petraeus told Congress that the surge of more U.S. troops to Iraq was beginning to work and President Bush gave a televised address in which he said "ordinary life was beginning to return" to Baghdad, Blackwater security guards shot at least 43 people on crowded Baghdad streets. At least 16 of those people died.

~Citizens for Legitimate Government, Sept. 27, 2007

Cop exonerated for tasering motorist

An Austin police corporal who pulled over a man along a busy highway on Thanksgiving 2006 for driving five miles per hour over the limit ordered the driver out of the car and then shocked him with his Taser stun gun as the motorist appeared to question what was happening, according to a videotape from the officer’s patrol car camera.

Cpl. Thomas O’Connor’s immediate supervisor and internal affairs investigators exonerated him of wrongfully using the weapon, saying he was justified because he "perceived a threat," dozens of pages of internal memos and other records said. In May, Cathy Ellison, acting police chief at the time, suspended O’Connor for three days in May for using force against Eugene Snelling and for violating a department policy requiring officers to "respect the rights of individuals and perform their services with honesty, sincerity, courage and sound judgement."

~American Statesman, Sept. 30, 2007

UF student tasered and arrested for asking questions

On Sept. 17, Constitution Day, University of Miami journalism student Andrew Meyer, 21, was mandhandled, tasered and arrested at for insistently, yet respectfully, asking probative questions of Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) who was visiting as a lecturer. Meyer asked why, since there was evidence of widespread votefraud in the 2004 election, was Democrat presidential candidate Kerry so quick to concede the election to President Bush? Then he asked if it was because he and Bush are both members of the Secret Skull and Bones fraternity. At that point, Meyer was surrounded by police, wrestled to the ground, tasered and arrested. All the while he was asking what he had done, was offering to leave the building and appealing to the other students to help. They all just sat there while, in the background, you can hear Kerry stating that Meyer's question is legitimate and should be answered. As Meyer was being tasered and was screaming, Kerry cracked the joke that it was too bad Meyer was not able to swear him in as president. Kerry, an alleged former Vietnam war protester, could have called the police off Meyer with a word, but didn't. Meyer was booked and released within hours and has not been available for comment since, though he has secured attorneys.

Distraught woman dies after being arrested at Phoenix airport

Carol Anne Gotbaum, 45, died in less than an hour after being taken into custody for erratic behavior at the Phoenix Airport Sept. 28, 2007. Gotbaum was handcuffed, strapped to a chair and placed in a holding cell at the airport. Officers claim she was left alone for only 10 minutes and, when they returned, she was found dead, apparently she strangled herself trying to get loose. She had committed no crime.

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