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News (Media Awareness Project) - Canada: Mounties Nix Training After Claims Of Profiling In Ariz
Title:Canada: Mounties Nix Training After Claims Of Profiling In Ariz
Published On:2012-01-31
Source:Province, The (CN BC)
Fetched On:2012-02-02 06:01:37

The RCMP have scrapped plans to send hundreds of officers to Arizona
for training in recognizing and testing drug-impaired drivers after
learning that the sheriff's office they had partnered with has been
accused of engaging in "unconstitutional policing."

A scathing U.S. Department of Justice report recently concluded that
the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office in Phoenix engages in racial
profiling of Latinos, unlawfully stops and arrests Latinos and
unlawfully retaliates against individuals who criticize the force.

The seriousness of the allegations prompted the RCMP to cancel its
training sessions, said Insp. Allan Lucier. Email to a friendEmail to
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"It was almost immediate after having read the report that this would
not be a facility that we would associate ourselves with," he said.

The Mounties had planned to train up to 200 RCMP, provincial and
municipal police officers to detect and test drug-impaired drivers.

The Maricopa sheriff's office - whose commander, Joe Arpaio, calls
himself "America's toughest sheriff" and has received a lot of
attention for his tough approach to illegal immigration - did not
respond to repeated calls and emails Monday.

David Eby, head of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association, which
notified the RCMP about the allegations against the sheriff's office,
said the Mounties made the right call.

He said police "should think twice" about sending officers south of
the border for any type of training.

In a Dec. 15 letter to the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, the U.S.
Department of Justice said its investigation of the force uncovered a
"chronic culture of disregard for basic legal and constitutional obligations."

Among the department's allegations:

? Latino drivers are four to nine times more likely to be pulled over
than non-Latino drivers; and

? Detention officers punish Latino inmates who don't follow commands
given in English.
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