Texas Police Chief Apologizes After Officers Ask Random Drivers For Blood & Saliva Samples

By: Kristin Tate
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As we reported yesterday, random drivers in Fort Worth, Texas were asked for breath, saliva, and blood samples by police officers. The drivers were stopped and asked for such samples even though they violated no traffic laws.

The stops, which happened on Friday, were done in the name of “government research,” to figure out how many people were driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, this project cost a whopping $7.9 million over the span of three years.

Now the police chief in Fort Worth has come out and apologized for letting his officers take part in this “survey.”

Police Chief Jeffrey Halstead said, “We realize this survey caused many of our citizens frustration and we apologize for our participation. I agree with our citizens’ concerns and I apologize for our participation. Any future federal survey of this nature, which jeopardizes the public’s trust, will not be approved for the use of Fort Worth police.”

NHTSA claimed the study was “voluntary,” but many of the individuals who were pulled over told NBC News that they felt forced to give over samples.

Kim Cope was one of the individuals pulled over. She claims that although officials did not explicitly force her to park and give a Breathalyzer, she felt as though she had no choice.

She said, “I gestured to the guy in front that I just wanted to go straight, but he wouldn’t let me and forced me into a parking spot.”


Cope claims the officials then offered her money for various samples. “They were asking for cheek swabs. They would give $10 for that. Also, if you let them take your blood, they would pay you $50 for that. I finally did the Breathalyzer test just because I thought that would be the easiest way to leave.”

Carl Olund, another pulled over driver, said he also felt pressured and was never told it was voluntary.

Olund said, “But she was like up in my window to where I was like, ‘OK, I might as well just stay.’ I mean, the cops are around, so if I take off, I’m not going to have four or five cops chasing me.”

The Forth Worth police station is currently undergoing an internal investigation into the matter.

 

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Kristin Tate is a multi-media reporter for Breitbart News and BenSwann.com. Dedicated to fearless journalism, she regularly works on undercover stings with James O'Keefe to reveal government waste, abuse, and fraud. Tate was a Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) Chapter President and Founder. She will continue to fight tirelessly for individual liberty and free markets through new media. Visit Kristin's website at www.TheLibertarianChick.com.

  • RogueR

    If it were truly voluntary, this wouldn’t be bad at all.

    • Zoo

      They know any one with drugs in there system will not VOLUNTARILY submit to the tests thats why they were forcing it on people!

    • SBS

      How in the world could this be justified – voluntary or not? Stopping folks and asking for saliva and blood? If I do that in the grocery store, is that appropriate? How about if I show up at work? What if I come to your house to make it more convenient? What about if I asked about your bank balances and how much debt you have instead? How often you and your spouse are intimate? Some things are private…generally saliva and blood would be among those things.

      • Phil

        Exactly. And I’ll bet that if someone kidnapped Chief Halstead at gunpoint, and demanded he divulge personal information about himself, he’d not be satisfied with just an apology.

    • g.johnon

      if you were truly intelligent, you wouldn’t have said that.

  • Craig T. Shoemaker

    Not a valid sample if police used, thus government wastes more of our tax $$. If written consents were not obtained it is unethical research and MUST BE discarded. … From former MD research scientist.

  • Carolyn

    My question would be did the Sheriff’s department know? The Sheriff has the authority to keep feds out of their county. If the Sheriff was aware then he should be recalled. If not he should be the one investigating the police chief and not an internal investigation, since he is supreme law enforcement in the county and his authority was over stepped.

  • Ward Damon Hubbard

    yea and we all know it is easier to your sorry then it is to ask permission for that sheriff you sir should be held accountable, I hope the people that put you in office, throw you out of office on your can, the dereliction of duty, and absolute failure to hold the public trust is inexcusable, as a public servant, can not overlooked and lets face if you were really sorry you would resign, that would be the honorable thing to do, fat chance of that happening right?

  • Seeking_Truth

    The real reason for the stops was not the collection of DNA swabs, blood samples, or breath tests. The real reason was twofold. First the government is gauging how the public will tolerate this sort of thing. The second reason is to get the public accustomed to these things, so that later on they will tolerate and even accept them. When the public is acclimated to a small scale operation, then the operation will be increased. For the government it’s a game of how much will the people tolerate, now? The government is on a never ending quest for control of the people. Throughout history all governments have done the same.

    • g.johnon

      sorry, I guess I should have read down further before I posted pretty much the same sentiment above. my bad.

  • Tony Capo

    NO ONE REFUSED? STUPID SHEEPLE.

  • Tony Capo

    ”I DO NOT CONSENT”.”AM I FREE TO GO”

  • silverfox

    $7mil plus and there are schools that can’t afford to get text books for the students and people are starving. Sorry, this is in every way wrong no even getting started on how intrusive it is to ask someone to give the police these types of things for no good reason at all.. Corruption is really starting to show on all levels no. I think we can all agree that there are much more important things that we could spend that kind of money on. First off, how about giving Detroit some god damn help. Or maybe we could hire some real security in Chicago, since everyone there is getting shot for no reason by a bunch of worthless thugs that have nearly taken over the entire place. How about we start using are brains? I think that’s probably the best starting point.

  • some guy

    Smells like corruption to me.

    • g.johnon

      good nose.

  • g.johnon

    aww come on. this was not government research to determine how many people were driving alcohol or drugs in their systems, It was government research to gauge how many folks would quiety put up with warrantless searches. looks like the gummint got their answer too.

  • Ken Simon

    The government “testing the waters” of government infringement on our rights. Sounds fishy to me!

  • steeltown65

    Who would agree to this? There’s no way I’m cooperating with the cops.

  • SlimJim

    I’m not from TX, but it seems to me that DFW and HOU come off as the Boston of Texas. Fück off is always a valid answer.

  • Kevin Warrick

    Just another attempt at trying to control our every movement. Shit, next thing you know they will try and implant chips into our bodies and tell us it is for helping them to locate us in “an emergency” (ya right). To hell with them all.

  • Boooooo

    At some time these thugs will lose the support of the vpters they are sworn to protect. When that happens the badge will be the enemy. God help those that display the badge.