GOVERNMENT SPYING on CITIZENS & POLICING FREE SPEECH in 50 States

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    POLICINGFREESPEECH:

    PoliceSurveillance

    and

    Obstruction

    of

    First

    Amendment

    ProtectedActivity

    AnACLUSurveyofReportedIncidents

    September 29, 2010

    UnitedStateslawenforcementagencies,fromtheFBItolocalpolice,havealonghistoryofspyingon

    Americancitizensandinfiltratingorotherwiseobstructingpoliticalactivistgroups. Politicalspyingwas

    rampantduringtheColdWarundertheFBIsCOINTELPRO,theCIAsOperationChaos,andother

    program.

    Unfortunately,itappearsthattheseoldtendencieshaveonceagaincometothefore. Lawenforcement

    agenciesacrossAmericacontinuetomonitorandharassgroupsandindividualsfordoinglittlemore

    thanpeacefullyexercisingtheirFirstAmendmentrights.

    AthoroughsearchandreviewofnewsaccountsbytheACLUrevealsthattheselawenforcement

    behaviorshavetakenplaceinatleast33statesplustheDistrictofColumbiainrecentyears. Americans

    havebeenputundersurveillanceorharassedbythepolicejustfordecidingtoorganize,march,protest,

    espouseunusualviewpoints,andengageinnormal,innocuousbehaviorssuchaswritingnotesortaking

    photographsinpublic.

    Forexample,inthepastyear,atleastfourtroublingFusionCenterreportshavecometolight:

    TheVirginiaFusionCentersHomegrownTerrorismDocument:http://www.infowars.com/media/vafusioncenterterrorassessment.pdf

    TheTexasFusionCentersPreventionAwarenessBulletin:http://www.privacylives.com/wpcontent/uploads/2009/03/texasfusion_021909.pdf

    TheMissouriFusionCentersDocumentontheModernMilitiaMovement:http://www.privacylives.com/wpcontent/uploads/2009/03/miacreport_022009.pdf

    TheMassachusettsFusionCentersCommonwealthFusionCentersStandardOperatingProcedures(notavailableonline)

    Thefollowingisastatebystatecompilationofexamplesofthesebehaviorsinrecentyears.

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    1

    Alaska

    MilitaryIntelligenceSpiedonAlaskansforPeace. AccordingtoanElectronicFrontierFoundationFOIA,militaryintelligencespiedontheantiwargroupAlaskansforPeaceand

    Justicein2005.Tags:DOD(http://rawstory.com/2010/02/militaryspiedplannedparenthood

    civilianphonecalls/)

    MaricopaCountySheriffDepartmentSurveilsPoliticalEnemies. AninternalreportaccusestheMaricopaCountysChiefDeputySheriffofusingMaricopasanticorruptionunittoconduct

    politicallymotivatedinvestigationsandofsurveilingMaricopaCountySheriffArpaiospolitical

    rivals.Tags:StateandLocalPolice(http://articles.latimes.com/2010/sep/17/nation/lanajoe

    arpaio20100918)

    Arizona

    StudentArrestedforAdvertisingProtest. UniversityofArizonaPoliceDepartmentsarresteda24yearoldgraduatestudentforusingsidewalkchalktoadvertiseaprotest. Individuals

    involvedwiththeincidentbelievethattheanonymousfacultymemberwhoreportedthechalk

    probablyhadaproblemwiththecontent,notthemedium,ofthemessage. Tags:Stateand

    LocalPolice(http://wildcat.arizona.edu/news/outrageatarrestintensifies1.556708)

    California

    FBIInfiltrationofIslamicCenter. AnFBIagenttestifiedincourtin2009thataninformanthadbeenplantedatanIslamicCenterinIrvine,California. SurveillancehaspromptedsomeMuslims

    toavoidmosquesandcutcharitablecontributionsoutoffearofbeingquestionedorbrandedas

    'extremists.'Tags:

    FBI

    (http://www.usatoday.com/news/religion/2009

    04

    21

    muslim

    surveillance_N.htmandhttp://www.presstv.ir/detail.aspx?id=87254&sectionid=3510203)

    LosAngelesPoliceDepartmentReportingPolicy. LAPDSpecialOrder#11,datedMarch5,2008includesalistof65behaviorsLAPDofficersshallreport. Thelistincludessuchinnocuous,

    clearlysubjective,andFirstAmendmentprotectedactivitiesas,takingmeasurements,using

    binoculars,takingpicturesorvideofootagewithnoapparentestheticvalue,drawing

    diagrams,takingnotes,andespousingextremistviews.Tags:StateandLocalPolice

    (http://www.aclu.org/pdfs/privacy/fusion_update_20080729.pdf)

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    2

    CaliforniaOfficeofHomelandSecurityReportsonPeacefulProtests. In2006,theLATimesgainedaccesstoCaliforniaOfficeofHomelandSecurityreportsdetailinginformationabout

    politicaldemonstrationsthroughoutCaliforniaincludingananimalrightsrallyoutsidea

    CanadianconsulateofficeinSanFranciscotoprotestthehuntingofseals,ademonstrationin

    WalnutCreekatwhichgovernmentofficialsspokeagainstthewarinIraq,andaWomens

    InternationalLeagueforPeaceandFreedomgatheringatacourthouseinsupportofa56year

    oldSalinaswomanfacingfederaltrespassingcharges. Tags:StateandLocalPolice

    (http://www.aclu.org/pdfs/privacy/fusion_update_20080729.pdf)

    SantaCruzPoliceInfiltrationofDIYNewYearsParade.WhenthecityofSantaCruzdecidedtocanceltheirannualFirstNightNewYearsParade,communityactivistsdecidedtocreatetheir

    ownparade,theDoItYourself(DIY)NewYearsParade. Policefoundoutaboutparadeplansin

    lateOctober2005anddecidedtospyonthegroupbyinfiltratingtheirparadeplanning

    meetings. PoliceChiefHowardSkerrypromisedacompleteinvestigationbuttappedDeputy

    ChiefVogeltheverypersonwhoauthorizedtheinfiltrationtodeterminewhetherthe

    authorizationwasappropriate. Notsurprisingly,VogelsreportclearedtheSantaCruzPolice

    Departmentofanywrongdoing.Tags:StateandLocalPolice

    (http://www.aclu.org/pdfs/privacy/fusion_update_20080729.pdf)

    CaliforniaNationalGuardMonitoringofMothersDayPeacefulProtest. OnMay5,2005,amemberofGov.ArnoldSchwarzeneggerspressoffice, informedCaliforniaNationalGuard

    officialsthatmembersofCODEPINK,GoldStarFamiliesforPeace,andotherswereplanningto

    markMothersDayurgingtheGovernorandLegislaturetosupportbringingCaliforniaNational

    GuardsmenhomefromIraqbyLaborDay.Theinformationwasthenforwardedupthechainof

    commandandNationalGuardintelligencestaffwasaskedtomonitortheevent. Tags:National

    Guard,FusionCenters(http://www.aclu.org/pdfs/privacy/fusion_update_20080729.pdf)

    MilitaryMonitorsCampusAntiRecruitingProtests. TwoDepartmentofDefense(DOD)ThreatandLocalObservationNotices(TALON)fromApril2005describeantirecruitingprotestsby

    studentsattheUniversityofCaliforniacampusesofBerkeleyandSantaCruz.Thesourcefor

    bothTALONreports,a"specialagentofthefederalprotectiveservice,U.S.Departmentof

    HomelandSecurity,"

    relayed

    protest

    information

    he

    received

    through

    email

    alerts.

    Tags:

    DOD,

    FBI,FPS(http://www.aclu.org/pdfs/privacy/fusion_update_20080729.pdf)

    UndercoverCampusandCountySheriffsAttendCalStateFresnoLectureonVeganism. OnNovember10,2004,theCaliforniaStateFresnostudentgroupCampusPeaceandCivilLiberties

    Coalition(CPCLC)hostedanoncampuslecturebyaspeakerformerlyemployedbyPeoplefor

    theEthicalTreatmentofAnimals(PETA). Thelectureraddressedapproximately60peopleabout

    thebenefitsofavegandiet. Sixofthose60attendeeswereundercoverpoliceofficersthree

    fromthecountysheriffsdepartmentandthreefromthecampuspolicedepartment. Tags:

    StateandlocalPolice(http://www.aclu.org/pdfs/privacy/fusion_update_20080729.pdf)

    MilitaryMonitorsPeacefulAntiWarProtest. ANovember2004DepartmentofDefense(DOD)ThreatandLocalObservationNotice(TALON)reportaddresseda"protestagainsttheIraqwar..

    .

    planned

    by

    a

    Sacramento

    chapter

    of

    a

    U.S.

    domestic

    group

    at

    the

    Sacramento

    Military

    EntranceProcessingStation." TheSanFranciscoJointTerrorismTaskforce(JTTF)hadadvised

    commandersoftheSanFranciscoandSanJosestationsoftheprotests,andnotesthat"it

    appearsthisprotestwillmostlikelybepeaceful,butsometypeofvandalismisalwaysa

    possibility."Tags:StateandLocalPolice,DOD,FBI,JTTF

    (http://www.aclu.org/safefree/spyfiles/27988pub20070117.html)

    TheMilitaryMonitorsVeteransforPeaceVeteransDayProtest. TheSacramentoChapterofVeteransforPeace(VFP)s2004Veteran'sDayprotestattheSacramentoMilitaryEntrance

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    3

    ProcessingStationlandedthemasthefirstentryonapublishedDepartmentofDefense(DOD)

    ThreatandLocalObservationNotices(TALON)extract. Tags:DOD

    (http://www.aclu.org/safefree/general/24272res20060227.html)

    CostaCountySheriffsHomelandSecurityUnitOfficersInfiltrateUnionDemonstration.WhenSouthernCaliforniaSafewaystoreworkerswentonstrikein20032004,adelegationof

    religiousleadersplannedapilgrimagetotheSafewayCEOshometodeliverpostcards

    supportingthestrikingworkers. SheriffsdeputiesfromContraCostaCountySheriffs

    HomelandSecurityUnitwenttotheUnitedFoodandCommercialWorkersUnion(UFCW),and

    staffdirectedthemtoacontactnumberonaflyer. Despitethefactthatthesheriffs

    departmenthadbeenincontactwiththepilgrimageorganizersunionleaderssawthesame

    sheriffsdeputiesinplainclothesattendingademonstrationataSafewaystoreinSanFrancisco.

    Tags:StateandLocalPolice

    (http://www.aclunc.org/issues/government_surveillance/asset_upload_file714_3255.pdf)

    FresnoCountySheriffsOfficeInfiltratesPeaceFresno. AnundercoverFresnoCountySheriffsdeputyinfiltratedanonviolentactivistgroup,PeaceFresno,attendingmeetingsandrallies,

    takingminutesforthegroupononeoccasionandtravelingtoademonstrationinSacramento.

    APeaceFresnomemberlearnedoftheinfiltrationwhenanobituaryintheFresnoBeerevealed

    thedeputys

    true

    identity

    and

    identified

    him

    as

    amember

    of

    the

    Fresno

    County

    Sheriffs

    Departmentsantiterroristteam.Tags:StateandLocalPolice

    (http://www.aclunc.org/issues/government_surveillance/asset_upload_file714_3255.pdf)

    CaliforniaAntiTerrorismInformationCenter