David Eckert was pulling out of a Wal-Mart parking lot when police officers pulled him over for failing to stop at a parking lot stop sign. Police ordered Eckert to step out of his vehicle, and that's when he committed the highly suspicious act of "clenching his buttocks." The officers' natural reaction? This man must be hiding narcotics in his anal cavity.

Being pulled over for a minor traffic violation is never a pleasant experience, but these Deming, New Mexico police officers took it to an atrocious new level, forcing Mr. Eckert to undergo a colonoscopy, anal probes, and defecation in a search for drugs. Yes, you read that correctly: the War on Drugs is being waged on minor traffic violators with enemas and sedatives.

After pulling Mr. Eckert over, officers obtained a search warrant for an anal cavity search and drove Eckert to a Deming hospital. In the one act of sanity in this insane saga, doctors at that hospital refused to conduct the search, saying it would be unethical. Undeterred by such ethical concerns, police then took Eckert to Gila Regional Medical Center, where, over Eckert's objections, doctors performed an x-ray of Eckert's cavity, three enemas, a colonoscopy, and several cavity searches, as well as forced him to defecate in front of them. No drugs were ever found.

As egregious as the police conduct here was, sadly this case is only one of many examples of police overreach in fighting the failed War on Drugs. This August, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit held that police could not use drugs discovered in the buttocks of Felix Booker, a Texas man who was pulled over for driving with expired tags and, upon being suspected of having marijuana, was strip-searched, sedated intravenously, intubated, and subjected to an anal probe. Calling the search "one of the greatest dignitary intrusions that could flow from a medical procedure," the Court ruled that the forced procedures violated Booker's Fourth Amendment rights. In two separate incidents in Texas this August, police officers probed the genitals and anal regions of four women suspected of possessing marijuana during routine traffic stops (you can see the horrifying video footage of the searches here). No drugs were found during the cavity searches.

Minor traffic stops should not be pretexts for invasive, degrading, and needless medical procedures. Eckert has filed a lawsuit against the City of Deming and its police officers for their outrageous conduct, including arguing that the search went far beyond what was permitted by the warrant. His lawsuit, and the media coverage of the indignity to which he was subjected, should serve as yet another wake-up call to police departments and politicians around the country that the War on Drugs – which has trampled constitutional rights and overcrowded our jails and prisons – must end.

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Anonymous

Gila Medical Center has a long history of predatory sexual perverted Doctors. Dr. Twana Sparks was found to perform non-authorized genital exams on dozens male patients without their consent while they were under anesthesia.

Story gets better - Dr. Sparks also wrote messages and created artistic images on the bodies of many of her patients while they were under anesthesia.

Gila Medial Center allowed Dr. Sparks to return to work after a short leave of absence.

Anonymous

Gila Medical Center has a long history of predatory sexual perverted Doctors. Dr. Twana Sparks was found to perform non-authorized genital exams on dozens male patients without their consent while they were under anesthesia.

Story gets better - Dr. Sparks also wrote messages and created artistic images on the bodies of many of her patients while they were under anesthesia.

Gila Medial Center allowed Dr. Sparks to return to work after a short leave of absence.

Anonymous

I would have refused to do it on threat of losing my job. I would have chosen unemployment and financial destitution over doing THAT.

It's not like my future was ever secured for the job I have. A gunman working with two OTHER gunman to rob my bank decided THAT for me. That if I ever work again, it'll never be in the part of health care I WANTED to work in and that part-time would be all I ever got.
Oh. And the fun-filled realization that I'll be hated for being poor but he'll ALways be able to get a gun to protect himself from tellers and off-duty EMTs.

I hate the whole damn system these days. I think there's such a thing as saving someone against what should have really happened and that I would have been WAY happier dead than brought back to THIS living hell.

People can think a quality of life doesn't matter all they want, but don't talk to me about it until AFTER you've been aggressively and rabidly despised for something someone ELSE did to render you incapacitated.

Anonymous

What is most concerning in these instances of public servant's criminality is that they themselves are in complete denial of how outrageous the nature of their acts are in fact. These kinds of acts are much more criminal carrying a drug. Carrying drugs is not the same than raping someone, we can agree the later of quite more deplorable.

When viewing the local news outlet police chief interview, it is clear he is afraid of facing the questions and hides behind the "law and regulations" which he says his department follows.

Further more, in a written statement he goes on, doubling down, asserting that the city will prevail in the matter of sodomizing folks when pulled over.

These are weak and fearful public servants that are abusing their power because of their weakness and all sort of monetary incentives put in place by the "drug war" policies of rewarding judges and prosecutors, police departments officer for locking people away at whatever cost and for whatever reason , the only outcome to this mix is a rampant abuse of the citizenry rights, including institutionalized rape.

Sad state of affairs we are in and unless the ACLU, civil right organization and every single one us get our act together and start pushing back to this travesty, our bun holes will be next.

Anonymous

I do not understand what the big issue is in regards to the events that had taken place. The person that had been pulled over was pulled over for a reason, of which he failed to follow the standard law of stopping at a stop sign. The article then states that the man had "committed the highly suspicious act of clenching his buttocks." Of which, he put all attention on himself and his anus.

The context of this article seems misguided and appears to have been written in angst of the "drug war". Everything the driver had done, he allowed himself to do, and frankly, he called all the attention to himself. There is nothing the law enforcement had done that they shouldn't have.

I would suggest clearing up facts versus bias opinions, as this makes you as guilty as the government that is failing this country.

Anonymous

Even worse outcome on this story is that I've read that after the police ordered the invasive procedures and forced him to submit, after no drugs were found and he was released, the hospital billed him, not the police department, for the procedures.

James W. Harris

I think the commenter above, #5, is absolutely right. This guy Eckert brought it on himself. If he had not clinched his buttocks, he would not have had to have been tortured and detained.

Anyone who clinches his buttocks in the presence of police has got to expect consequences.

He could have had a bomb concealed in his anus instead of possibly drugs. Maybe even a nuclear weapon of some sort. He is lucky the police kept their heads. He could have ended up in a secret prison somewhere, never heard from again. Or obliterated by drones.

The police have a hard job to do. Citizens clinching their buttocks, whether deliberately or without thinking, just make it harder for the thin blue line to do its job of saving us from terrorists and drug dealers and aliens from Mexico and aliens from outer space and Deros and endless other menaces.

Support your local police for a stronger police state!

Anonymous

I get so tired of hearing about this great country being built on blood,sweat, ect... blah, blah, blah. the first thing the very first American did was Steal. He stole the land were standing on right now from the natives. And weve been stealing with both hands ever since, All over the world. And in the last 60 years the good old USA has been selling dope and imprisoning her own citizens to suppliment her income. If you still beleive that outlaws can "smuggle" dope onto the continental US you need to snap out of it and read some books. The poor people of this great country are working so hard to make ends meet with the artificial 50 to 60 hr work week their too tired to question anything. Frankly I dont know how anyone was surprised when passenger jets hit our bldgs. Still the best place in the world to live. Just dont take it personal when the rest of the world dislikes you. Happy Holidays

Edward Duree

I believe that Fourth Amendment law must grow. In the last two decades, reasonableness has gone through some transformation into a balancing test to excuse warrants. That test should be included in all searches, with or without a warrant. Examining the totality of circumstances, a search's reasonableness includes an assessment of the degree to which a search promotes a legitimate governmental interest, balanced against the degree to which it intrudes upon an individual's privacy. The reasonableness of a search does not depend solely on probable cause, although that is required, but also upon the nature and magnitude of the intrusion. Both a person's security, an essentially trespassory interest, and privacy must be viewed as sine qua nons of Fourth Amendment law.
Obviously, the prospect of finding a small amount of a controlled substance weighed against what is an arrest and forced penetration of a person's anus is unreasonable. If the perpetrator did not wear a badge, he would be charged with the crime of false imprisonment and kidnapping for purposes of sexual assault, and forcible penetration of a person's anus with a foreign object. These are major violent felony crimes that carry long prison terms. In this context the government had no legitimate interest in perpetrating such crimes to attemt to discover a lesser nonviolent crime. Even with probable cause, the threshold of which requires less and less evidence, it is nevertheless an unreasonable search by any moral standard except one that exempts government from moral standards.

Anonymous

Commenter number 9 has written a summary that is correct for all U.S. legal jurisdictions. To commenters #5, #7, and all who agree with their viewpoints as stated above, I say this: May your ass cheeks clench involuntarily when you next see injustice aproaching you. That will be justice to those that that are blind to right vs. wrong and legal vs. illegal.

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